Moving Lives, Healthy Minds - a programme that connects physical activity with wellbeing to help service users with their long term health
Posted: Wed, 17 Mar 2021 22:40
Today marks International Social Prescribing Day (18 March), so we thought it would be a great opportunity for us to showcase a programme that we are currently delivering called Moving Lives, Healthy Minds.
What is Social Prescribing?
In simple terms, social prescribing is when health professionals (GP's, nurses, primary care providers etc) refer patients to the community in order to improve their health and wellbeing.
It is a move away from clinical support/services and can address an individual's needs in a more holistic manner, often through delivery of various activities provided by voluntary or community sector organisations.
So how does this link in with the Moving Lives, Healthy Minds programme?
The Moving Lives, Healthy Minds programme is a three-year piece of work that we are delivering in partnership with the Birmingham Solihull and Mental Health Foundation Trust (BSMHFT) and Newman University.
It is hoped that through this partnership working, we will be able to bring real change across people, organisations and local services that will impact communities and lead to a future, sustainable model of working.
Approximately 15,000 people in Birmingham are under the care of BSMHFT Community Mental Health Teams with a diagnosis of severe and enduring mental illness.
As many individuals accessing these services have a long history of mental illness, they typically have limited coping mechanisms, low resilience and are subsequently less likely to be engaging in meaningful or healthy activities.
The programme will focus on working with service users of the BSMHFT Community Mental Health Teams (CMHT's) based in Erdington and Longbridge and will involve consultation and co-production with service users.
The aim will be to create supportive and purposeful physical activity initiatives centred around patient motivations that are embedded in their long-term recovery plans.
We are initially focusing our work in the Longbridge and immediate surrounding areas and have identified and recruited a number of sport and physical activity providers to be involved in the programme.
What is the latest update for the programme?
We have developed strong relationships with several sport and physical activity providers in and around Longbridge and we have created a mental health training package that we want all individuals involved in delivery to complete.
This is crucial to not only provide coaches and volunteers with all of the skills and confidence necessary to deliver safe and welcoming sessions, but will also help build confidence amongst the individuals attending the sessions, knowing that everyone involved has received in depth training on mental health.
It is hoped that the training will be completed during March and the beginning of April, shortly followed by a week of taster sessions and then sessional delivery.
What are the aims and the longer-term outcomes of the programme?
Through our partnership with BSMHFT and Newman University, as well as the sport and physical activity providers involved in the programme, we shall develop a sustainable, local network based on peer support and co-production to improve mental wellbeing and access into appealing, high quality community activity.
The physical and mental benefits of being physical active are for all to see and so we really want to harness this and use it as a vehicle for change.
The Moving Lives, Healthy Minds programme will establish a successful social recovery pathway from clinical into the community using sport and physical activity, with sustainability at the heart.