The PCH and Livewell Southwest partnership were in Whitleigh on Friday afternoon holding a drop-in session for local residents to come along and find out about some of the great initiatives available to help people with their health and wellbeing.
The link between health and housing has always been at the forefront of the partnership which is looking to address local health inequalities through a combination of education, support, training and maximising local services. The event was an opportunity for the partnership to gather information from the local community about the main issues affecting their health and wellbeing, what is needed to support them.
Four Greens Community Trust hosted the event where PCH and Livewell Southwest were joined by colleagues from local partner organisations Elder Tree, ReThink, Plymouth Energy Community, Clarion Housing and Timebank Southwest.
Tami Skelton from Food is Fun was on hand with some useful cooking demos, showing residents how to cook tasty and healthy meals on a budget. As the delicious smell of lentil stew and mushroom and pea risotto filled the room, residents were busy explaining to PCH what challenges they face in living a healthy lifestyle during the cost-of-living crisis and what we can put in place to support them.
PCH residents Becky and Paula popped in to see what the drop-in session was about: “We try our best to live healthily although its not always that easy at times, we’ve come down today to have a look around and speak to some of the people here to find out some tips and hints for any little changes we can make that could help.”
We also caught up with Bob who was volunteering with Timebank Southwest – a Timebank is an exchange of time or skills, which means you giving up time to help someone or your community and you can ask for someone to share their skills and time in return.
As Bob explains: “I was a bit sceptical at the beginning as I’d never really done much around my community as such. I’ve been suffering with a few health issues over the past few years which has meant I haven’t really managed to get out as much I’d have liked, but then a friend of mine signed me up for the Timebank.
“I’ve been out walking dogs for people most days and get to come along and speak to people about giving up some time at events like this. Bit by bit getting out each day and being involved in my community has given me my life back when I needed it most and I’m so glad I got involved, and I’d urge others to do the same.”
Rachael Fox, Partnership Manager for Plymouth Community Homes and Livewell Southwest said: “Our partnership has been working well for the past 12 months and we are always looking to get out into the community and engage with residents directly. There are so many places out there that can help but people aren’t always aware of what is happening locally. We’re hoping to raise awareness of the support available from our other partners, who can support people in a variety of ways and help them improve their health and wellbeing. We always want to allow the opportunity for residents to share what they feel is needed in their community, and this helps us to develop the project and make sure it delivering what is wanted.”