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Thank you to People’s Health Trust

This generous funding has supported the development of resident led activities in communities which experience inequalities in health.

Our work together focusses on developing strong social connections within communities, as a foundation for improving health and wellbeing and bringing residents together to influence what happens in their neighbourhoods.

People's Health Trust is an independent charity investing in local neighbourhoods to help create a society without health inequalities. It works closely with each of the regional and country lotteries raising money through The Health Lottery and distributes grants.

Local People Programme 2015-2021

Royal Voluntary Service and People’s Health Trust worked together to increase social connections and the amount of control people have over their lives and their communities, in order to improve health and wellbeing.

Over 6 years, we worked with 6 local communities which experience greater inequalities in health

  • We engaged with 14,863 local residents to find out what was important to them
  • 51 grants totalling over £111,000 were awarded to local groups, so they could bring their great ideas to life
  • Funding was provided to meet community priorities including community transport, dementia support, exercise groups and social groups.

Residents built their confidence, skills and knowledge through experience and formal training

  • 6 local Steering Groups came together at a National Conference to share their experiences and expertise
  • 44 local people stepped up to lead Steering Groups
  • 75 residents volunteered their time and talent to lead and deliver activities
  • 92 people gained IT skills
  • 22 people learned how to give lifesaving First Aid
  • 44 people trained in developing and running community groups
  • 30 people learnt how to evaluate activities to understand how successfully they meet participant’s needs.

Participants formed strong social connections and support networks

  • Every month around 800 people took part in activities to build social connections, ranging from singing to sewing, crafting to creative writing, Qi Gong to genealogy and drama to social dining
  • 38 regular activities will continue as community led activities, leaving a lasting legacy
  • Local people worked together to support vulnerable residents during the pandemic, maintaining community connections, ensuring welfare needs were met and providing online activities.

Local people worked to influence decision makers, for positive change in their neighbourhoods

  • 2 important local bus services were saved
  • Speed limits were changed and parking rules were enforced, making streets safer for everyone – especially the more vulnerable
  • An Influencing Toolkit was developed as part of the programme legacy, so that local people can continue to influence what happens in their neighbourhoods
  • Community police teams were engaged, increasing visibility and making people feel safer
  • Residents have established working relationships with Local Authorities, Parish Councils, Town Councils and other providers and fora – ensuring local people’s voices are heard.

"It is making me more physically active, 18 months ago I was hardly walking and now I am moving about much more. I also didn’t like speaking up in front of people but now I don’t think twice about it. I am happier to put my point of view across, even if it’s different to someone else’s. I’ve made a great social network and enjoy being so busy."

Linda, Local People Programme participant

Talk to us...

If you're interested in supporting Royal Voluntary Service or would like to know more about our charity, we'd love to hear from you. Contact Liz Thomas on 07714 898 557 or email liz.thomas@royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk