The impact of the Virtual Village Hall on health and wellbeing
The Virtual Village Hall is a free, online activity hub and community developed by Royal Voluntary Service. It helps people stay physically and mentally active, connected and having fun, and supports people with long-term health conditions.
Activity sessions are livestreamed daily on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, and are led by expert tutors and presenters, including some well-known faces. Followers can take part in real time or can view on-demand. No sign up required.
There are nearly 2,000 sessions available to view, from exercise and dance to arts and crafts, upcycling, meditation and cooking, with new content added regularly. Where activities require equipment, ingredients or materials, these are low-cost and easy to source.
The Virtual Village Hall is open to everyone. It is also used by health and social care professionals such as social prescribers.
The Virtual Village Hall was launched in April 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as a way of helping people stay mentally and physically active at home and connect with people who share their interests.
We asked participants to complete a survey to help us understand the difference that the Virtual Village Hall made to their health and wellbeing.
Virtual Village Hall evaluation
A survey was conducted to better understand the health and wellbeing impacts of those participating in the Virtual Village Hall during the pandemic. The survey was promoted on the Virtual Village Hall and via our social media channels in March 2023.
The survey asked questions on frequency of use, types of activities people participated in, perceived impact on their physical health and emotional wellbeing, improvements to be made, and future use.
The survey findings demonstrate the vital role Virtual Village Hall has played in keeping people active and socially connected.
“It’s a fantastic resource and I refer it on to my patients”
I love everything about this programme. It's done wonders for my mental health.
Female, shielding during pandemic aged 65-74.
* LTHC = Long term health condition