Beating the path to fitness How thousands joined a fun scheme to win points and prizes in the outdoors
Produced by Adur & Worthing Councils to promote the work underway to improve health and wellbeing across our communities
elcome to the first issue of ThriveAW (Adur and Worthing) ...
In this new quarterly magazine we will be highlighting the huge variety of innovative work that we and others are doing locally. We will also be launching our new Thrive agenda for Adur and Worthing. This agenda recognises the challenges ahead in creating thriving communities. They include employability, health outcomes, housing needs and social isolation. They also include improving the use of public spaces and protecting the natural environment. Working with colleagues in key areas of the Councils we are formulating a new co-ordinated approach to health and wellbeing so that, either through our own work or by enabling our communities to develop their own activities and projects, we build resilience, independence, hope and aspiration. Projects range from supporting the homeless and the street population, to encouraging a healthy lifestyle in primary school children, addressing mental health in the workplace and supporting the elderly. In this first issue we particularly highlight the work weâ€™re doing to understand and tackle the causes of loneliness and social isolation. Research carried out by the Councils shows that many of the solutions are to be found in connecting with others within and across the generations. Many of the other projects covered in this issue highlight the social connections being made through grassroots community initiatives or Council endeavours, and often the two working together. They are all helping our communities to feel connected to each other and to the places in which they live and work. As we come to the end of the year and prepare to embark on a new one, we look forward to taking our work forward and continuing to expand and develop, with your support, our ambition to see everyone in Adur and Worthing thrive.
Mary Dâ€™Arcy Director for Communities, Adur & Worthing Councils
Contents 03 WELCOME An introduction from David Simmons and
04-10 FEATURE: TACKLING LONELINESS
Finding ways to end social isolation
MIND OVER MATTER Intuitive thinking to help bring life-long changes
12-13 COVER: STREETS AHEAD
The community runs, walks and cycles its way to wellbeing
SAFE AND SECURE HOUSING
PASSION FOR MUSIC
Innovative new music project engages and inspires young people
New temporary homes as Council buys former care home
16-17 ROUGH SLEEPING How the Councils are using a multi-agency approach to combat rough sleeping
Teaching schoolchildren the importance of a good diet and exercise
OPENING DOORS TO TENANTS
A local media campaign helps save money on temporary accommodation
20-21 COMMUNITY ALARMS Home devices to support independent living 22
DISABLED FACILITIES GRANTS Home repairs help Vera, a retired nurse
MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AIDERS
Training up staff to recognise a colleague in need
24-25 ADUR DIARY Activities and events in Adur
26-27 WORTHING DIARY Activities and events in Worthing Cover picture: Children taking part in Beat the Street (see pages 12-13)
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A welcome from David Simmons, Adur’s Executive Member for Health and Wellbeing
ost of us feel lonely at some stage in our lives, but true social isolation is something which can be more damaging and have a long-lasting effect. Through my work in our communities I have seen the effect it can have on both the individual and those around them. It can lead to health problems and other challenges such as housing, unemployment and personal debt … which is where the Council comes in. For the last few years there has been a turnaround in public health with your local Council taking a leadership role in helping to improve the health and well-being of our communities. Here in Adur we’ve recognised that there are many areas of Council responsibilities that can have an impact on the health and wellbeing challenges people face.
This means that increasingly we are working - in partnership with others - to build solutions into our key services and in five key areas: housing; neighbourhoods and places; youth anti-social behaviour; finance and debt. It also involves promoting healthy lifestyle choices and combating loneliness in all ages. Through our new Thrive agenda we want to work across the generations to help all age groups flourish and achieve their potential, whether they are starting out in life or have a wealth of experience to draw on and sometimes share. In this magazine, you will find details of the many ways in which your Council and our communities are seeking to help everyone thrive in their work and leisure. This shows not only our determination to tackle the challenges effectively, but that they sit among our highest priorities.
A welcome from Heather Mercer, Worthing’s Executive Member for Health and Wellbeing
e are very lucky to live here on the South Coast, nestled between the sea and the Downs and in communities which are generally safe, confident and happy, and which value togetherness. You only have to look at the wealth of community groups we have in Worthing. Whether charitable, grassroots or faith-based, they work away tirelessly, often behind the scenes, to benefit the lives of others. It is this selfless community effort which the Council will support and enable through our new Thrive agenda which seeks to improve health and wellbeing in our communities. We have, of course, always put the interests of our communities firmly at the centre of our work, but our new Thrive agenda recognises the challenges ahead and seeks to tackle
them head on and in an integrated way. Several Council services housing, health and wellbeing, customer and revenue services - will work closely together to try and solve the often long-term problems which frequently go hand-in-hand. These include housing, employment and increasing isolation as well as health and wellbeing. With the help of community groups and our public sector partners we want to create innovative opportunities for change. We want people to feel supported, safe and secure so that their ambitions can be fulfilled in whatever community they find themselves, whether a community of neighbourhood, of need, of interest or business. Engaging them, separately and collectively, we want to support everyone to lead fulfilling lives in a part of the country we are so proud to live in.
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Youâ€™re not alone: pioneering research aims to tackle loneliness
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Social isolation needs to be tackled if we are to build thriving communities. Louise Byrne reveals the findings of local research, and the work being done to connect people. Continued on pages 6 to 10
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Continued from page 5
Identifying local solutions to loneliness
esearchers have been sent out into the community to better understand some of the causes of loneliness and social isolation across the generations in Adur and Worthing. In a pioneering piece of research led by Adur & Worthing Councils, the researchers focussed in on a small area: Chesswood Primary School and its surroundings in Worthing. There they met with people of all ages to find out exactly how they felt about their social lives, and the connections they were, or were not, making. The research was part of the Thriving Connections project launched by Adur & Worthing Councils in partnership with West Sussex County Council and the NHS Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group. Four common themes and challenges
were identified by the researchers which will now be used to support and enable new projects and strategies, either Council-led or communitydriven. Tina Favier, Head of Wellbeing at Adur & Worthing Councils, says: “By listening to people’s experiences locally, we now plan to work with organisations and community groups from across Adur and Worthing to test innovative new approaches.” Loneliness and social isolation are known to not only affect a person’s wellbeing but also have a greater impact on their health than obesity and physical inactivity. The Councils’ new Thrive agenda to improve health and wellbeing in Adur and Worthing also recognises that loneliness can affect all ages and be alleviated by greater contact across
the generations. “It’s important for people to understand what loneliness is. Feeling lonely for short periods of time is normal. However feeling lonely all or most of the time is our mind’s way of telling us that we need to reconnect with people,” added Tina. One of the first pilot projects to come out of the research will award small grants of up to £300 to groups who encourage social interaction particularly in small public spaces. Further projects are planned which it is hoped will benefit all ages and also encourage intergenerational contact across Adur and Worthing.
For more information on the Thriving Connections project visit: www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/ community-wellbeing
Key challenges to tackling loneliness
How can we help parents build confidence and self-esteem so that they better develop meaningful relationships and valuable social skills which they can pass on to their children?
How can we use existing and new public spaces - parks, community centres and cafes - to better enable interactions between younger and older people?
How can we address the barriers to neighbours getting to know each other? Obstacles include a high turnover of neighbours, people being too busy and mobility challenges in the elderly.
How can we help elderly people gain a sense of purpose in their daily lives? Many live isolated from intergenerational contact, yet sharing their stories and teaching skills can be highly beneficial for everyone.
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CASE STUDY 1
Above: A Sunday afternoon ‘rocking tot’
Raving on a Sunday afternoon
hen Dan Flanagan moved to Worthing with his wife and young son in 2015, he had no friends locally and was surprised to find himself a bit lonely.
also evolved to become a grassroots movement that uses arts, technology and music to tackle social isolation in dads and children through a network of Dad La Soul clubs.
Walking around the parks and noticing other dads out on their own with their children, he realised he was not the only man for whom fatherhood could be a mixed bag. It was a realisation which has since led to a whole new chapter in his life.
Recent research, supported by Adur & Worthing Councils as part of their new Thrive agenda, suggests that community-led activities like these help to not only tackle social isolation, but increase confidence and self-esteem in parents which they then pass on to their children.
Dan decided to hire out a community arts venue for a Sunday afternoon rave for families, and over 450 people of all ages turned up to the first TotRockinBeats event at St Paul’s in Worthing on Father’s Day. The event’s success led to the founding a community interest company which has since put on over 30 events all over Sussex. It has
For TotRockinBeats, partnerships with other local groups have also developed, including with Men In Sheds, The Repair Cafe, Stay Up Late, Guildcare, The Food Pioneers and Audio Active. These have allowed them to tackle isolation not just with dads, but across the generations and in a diverse range
of communities, from those suffering with dementia to those with learning difficulties. Dan said: “It’s pretty embarrassing as a middle-aged man to admit that you would like some new friends. It’s a bit too easy these days to spend more time on Facebook rather than having human connections. “But we’ve bought thousands of people together, from newborn babies and over-active toddlers to the elderly, adults with learning difficulties and dads that are struggling. These are all people within our communities who don’t get enough opportunities to belong and connect with each other. Now they do.” For more information about TotRockinBeats and Dad La Soul visit their website: www.totrockinbeats.com ThriveAW | 7
CASE STUDY 2
Volunteer becomes ‘Good Neighbour’
ave is a volunteer with the Good Neighbours scheme run by Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) in Adur and Worthing. Every week he meets up with Dick, a widower, who had approached the service because he was feeling lonely and isolated. Slowly, the two men built up a rapport through their mutual interest in sport and this led - gently - to talk of broadening Dick’s horizons by getting him out and about again. Dick, a wheelchair user, can’t praise Dave highly enough: “If it wasn’t for Dave I wouldn’t have left my home. I was resigned to being stuck indoors. “He takes his time and makes sure I’m happy and safe in my wheelchair, and never hurries me. I look forward to the weekly lunch club we go to. I enjoy the atmosphere, the banter and of course the wonderful food!” Dave enjoys their time together too: “It is very satisfying, especially to know that I have helped someone do something they thought they couldn’t do. I feel I have made a difference to someone’s life.” The RVS also offers other services which Dave has helped out with. He had previously enjoyed helping older people in his local community
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Above: Making a difference through good neighbourliness
attend medical appointments through a hospital transport service. That service closed and he was soon an invaluable RVS driver bringing people to the Community Centre and vintage tearoom run by other RVS volunteers. It was clear he had a great way with people, a good sense of humour and a ‘can do’ approach to anything he took on. Later he also helped with the 12-week intervention RVS scheme that offers
people a volunteer/companion to help them rebuild confidence and access social groups in their local community. The scheme backs up research carried out by Adur & Worthing Councils as part of their Thrive agenda which shows the importance of companionship through good neighbourliness. For more information about the RVS, visit: www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk
CASE STUDY 3
Pocket park and wildlife haven take shape
new pocket park is taking shape on a small piece of cleared land in Anson Road, Worthing - all thanks to a real community effort. The success story began when housing association Worthing Homes identified a piece of land they owned which was under-utilised and not suitable for development. In partnership with local group Green Tides and The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) Growing Communities’ scheme, they knocked on doors locally and carried out surveys to find out what the local community would like to see done with the green space. The two most popular requests were to retain space for recreation and care for the wildlife in the area. Before long, the local community
and green volunteers from all three organisations, as well as the local Maybridge St Richard Parish Church, were working to clear the land and, with the help of children, build bug hotels, plant wildflower seeds and bulbs and enjoy bushcraft activities. TCV started a Fun Club on the site and organised activities, including preparing and eating a healthy lunch, junior archery and football. The Growing Communities scheme has been made possible following a successful joint bid to The National Lottery Community Fund by TCV and Adur & Worthing Councils. One mother helping out at the Fun Day said: “It’s great that my girls are out having fun, playing football, and we are all going to share a meal together!”
to work with the residents to help them organise football activities on the land. The Anson Road project was invited to take part in a Natural England pilot which aims to assess the ecological value of sites and create reliable methods to measure the social and environmental benefits they provide to local communities. These include carbon storage, air quality, pollination and pest control, as well as a sense of place and interaction with nature. The project also reflects local research on loneliness and social isolation carried out by Adur & Worthing Councils as part of its Thrive agenda. The research found that making better use of public spaces provides users with a greater sense of place and also offers greater opportunities to connect with others.
Worthing Homes and TCV are hoping Below: Football skills are tested at the new Anson Road green space
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CASE STUDY 4
Repair Cafe: mingle and mend
orthing’s Repair Cafe does what is says on the tin, but it also serves another very useful purpose. As well as attempting to repair radios, computers, toys and other much loved broken items, the once-a-month event also offers people in the community a welcomed chance to socialise.
a place where people ranging from age 3 to 93 come to socialise
Pictured: Volunteers pass on skills at the Repair Cafe
Pauline Cory, a founder member of both Transition Town Worthing and its Repair Cafe, says: “When we started, the idea of the cafe was to save items which might otherwise end up in landfill. We didn’t realise that it would also become a place where people ranging from age 3 to 93 would come to socialise.” “There are particularly elderly people who return each month, sometimes with a new - or even the same - item, or sometimes it’s just to have a cuppa in the cafe that we run alongside it.” The Repair Cafe is also a point of social contact for the volunteers who run it: the cafe staff, the
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‘meeters and greeters’ and crucially those who do the repairs. Whilst some of the repairers are young, many are middle aged or older with a wealth of knowledge and experience to bring to the job. Recent research supported by Adur & Worthing Councils as part of its Thriving Connections Project has shown that groups like the Repair Cafe provide a valuable chance
for older generations to pass on their knowledge and feel a sense of purpose. They also encourage contact across the generations. More information about the Repair Cafe and Transition Town Worthing can be found at: •
Mind Over Matter: for lifestyle changes that last
course set up by the Councilsâ€™ Health & Wellbeing team is helping people take back control of their lives, first in their heads and then in practice. The intuitive thinking skills course is aimed at people facing a wide range of issues, including mental and physical health difficulties, eating problems, gambling, smoking and alcohol and substance misuse. It can also be useful for combating the mixed feelings surrounding other lifestyle choices, for example longterm unemployment The course, which is run over five consecutive days by Intuitive Thinking Skills, is part of the Councilsâ€™ new Thrive agenda, set up to recognise and tackle some of challenges which are stopping individuals and our communities thrive. The course helps people understand how learnt behaviour plays a significant role in shaping lifestyle choices and our wellbeing. It encourages participants to pinpoint the problem they have, understand where addictive thinking comes from, recognise the stresses that lead to it, and hopefully break themselves free from it. The aim is to build resilience
and motivation for permanent change. Those who take part have often been referred to the course from local services, and self-referral is also possible. For further information, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Julie Tuppen: email@example.com
I will never see food as the enemy again. The single most important thing I learnt from the course was that I can and will stop dieting and food abuse. Thank you for the opportunity to confront my problem, and to find such a quick and sensible - Course attendee
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eat the Street proved a real success in Adur and Worthing this summer.
More than 16,000 people took to the streets to run, walk or cycle their way to improved health and wellbeing. Participants also won prizes, raised money for charity and met new people. This year Beat the Street was adopted by Adur & Worthing Councils in partnership with Arun District Council, Public Health England,
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Coastal West Sussex and The Conservation Volunteers. The challenge not only helped to encourage healthy exercise, but bring people together from across the generations - a key aim of the Councils’ new Thrive agenda. Residents scored points in the free game by tapping an activated card on ‘Beat Box’ sensors which were placed on lamp posts across specially chosen routes.
Individuals could receive ‘lucky tap’ prizes and also win prizes as part of a schools-based or community-based competition. The Community Team competition was won by Epic Training led by Marie Pickering who works for The Rowans Gym. The £600 was donated to the gym to buy new equipment. The gym provides a specialist service for people with a physical, sensory or memory impairment, and people with an acquired brain injury.
Pictured: Students from Worthing’s Orchards Junior School enjoying Beat the Street
Meet the Pickerings The Pickering family - spanning three generations - helped take Epic Training to victory in this summer’s Beat the Street. Grandparents Dave and Sue Pickering joined daughter, Marie, and grandson, Callum, in the winning team. A self-confessed sporty, 10-year-old Callum had a head start, but the older generations still had plenty to gain. After many years out of the bicycle saddle, Callum’s grandmother was riding a bike again. “I felt good about myself, as I was really ill last Christmas. I could feel that I was getting
stronger, healthier and my asthma was improving. It was so nice to be doing something together as a family. We are very proud of them. “I also met new people and it felt really good to think of the community getting together in such great numbers to do this. “It kept us on the ball and each day we planned where we were going, how long we would do,” said Sue, who bought her bike for the event from the Durrington Community cycle project based at Pond Road, Shoreham.
Above: Three generations of the Pickering Family
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Affordable safe and secure housing V
ital temporary housing to support a growing number of homeless individuals and families is set to be created in the heart of Worthing after ambitious plans to convert a former care home were approved.
Like many areas across the country, the town has seen a rise in homelessness in recent years with more than 160 people currently in emergency local authority housing across Adur and Worthing. To ensure safe, secure and affordable places are provided within the local area for those in need, Worthing Borough Council bought the former Masonic care home in Rowlands Road. After consultation with the local community, a proposal to convert the vacant building into 19 new properties was approved by the local authorityâ€™s Planning Committee. Steven Hay, Acquisitions and Landlord
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Support Coordinator at Adur & Worthing Councils, says: â€œThe homes will be used to accommodate residents in need of temporary housing until a permanent place to live becomes available. It will also reduce the amount spent on unsuitable Bed and Breakfast accommodation and the need to place households out of the area.â€? Councillors approved the plans after hearing that the current building, some of which dates from Edwardian times, would be converted and extended. A total of 19 new properties will be created, consisting of four two-bedroom dwellings,
14 one-bedroom and one bedsit with seven on-site parking spaces. There was a demand for this type of housing in the area, with nearly threequarters of requests for emergency accommodation from households requiring one or two bedrooms. Measures will be in place to deal with any antisocial behaviour and the development team said it would work with the private sector housing team to make sure the properties meet or exceed required standards. For more info and contact details about Adur & Worthing Housing, visit: www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/housing
Passion for music helps put young people on the path to success
group of young people get on the bus taking them to an innovative new music project in Lancing. They’re apprehensive but impressed when they arrive and see what awaits them: stateof-the-art electronic and studio equipment which they will use to be creative and learn new music skills. The project has been set up by the Safer Communities Partnership coordinated by Adur & Worthing Councils and drawing members from the police and fire services, West Sussex County Council, the NHS and the National Probation Services. The aim of the project is to engage and inspire young people through music, expose them to new and innovative ways of learning and to perhaps develop a talent. It also builds on the Councils’ Thrive agenda to improve health and wellbeing in its communities.
Above: Rag’n’Bone Man (back row centre in hat) with students from Northbrook Met College
so far engaged more than 30 young people helping them overcome barriers in their lives to make lasting positive changes.
With the help of an £18,888 grant from the Home Office via the Police Crime Commissioner, the first sixmonth project started in September this year in Worthing and Lancing.
The staff who run the AudioActive workshops are often young people who have themselves struggled in the past. The young people learn skills such as DJ’ing, MC’ing, rapping and lyric writing. There are also challenging discussions on difficult topics, such as some of the lyrics in rap music.
Run by the charity AudioActive, and supported by its patron, the multi-BRIT Award winning singer Rag’n’Bone Man, the project has
Weekly sessions are held at West Sussex Alternative Provision College in Lancing and at Cellar Arts Club in Worthing, but the students are also
able to join other AudioActive openaccess sessions and Kustom Vibes nights held at a local live music venue. Adam Joolia, CEO of AudioActive, says: “It is about giving them aspirations and pathways which, if they have a passion for music, could potentially lead towards careers in the creative industries which provide so many opportunities in Britain.” For more information on the Safer Communities Partnership: www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/safercommunities For more information on AudioActive: www.audioactive.org.uk
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“I’M STARTING TO TURN THINGS AROUND”
ough sleeping figures in Worthing have fallen and are presently stable, but the needs of rough sleepers are changing and often becoming more complex.
The list of agencies involved in the Rough Sleepers Team highlights the wide variety of issues faced by the rough sleeping community. Staff come from: •
Adur & Worthing Councils’ Housing Needs, Outreach, Foreshore & Park Rangers, Anti-Social Behaviour and Car Parks teams
the National Probation Service
Health Central GP Surgery
Charities: Turning Tides, Storm Ministries and PAUSE
Councils are members of the Worthing Rough Sleepers
The Community Mental Health Trust
Team, a successful multi-agency approach to combating
West Sussex County Council Children’s Services, Adult Social Care and the WORTH domestic violence service
Since September 2018, more than 120 people have spent at least one night on the street, but it is those who regularly rough sleep who are most likely to have more complex needs. Often intensified by living on the streets, these problems include long-term health issues, multiple substance misuse and mental health challenges rooted in past experiences and childhood trauma. With the help of government funding, Adur & Worthing
rough sleeping. The team meets weekly to discuss how to help people off the streets, and crucially how to tackle the underlying issues which keep an individual there and sometimes make it difficult for them to accept or access support.
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Together they take a holistic approach to supporting each rough sleeper. This includes tackling enforcement notices issued for antisocial behaviour, addressing health and wellbeing issues
Case Study Pictured: Working with rough sleepers to meet their needs
Former rough sleeper tells his story “I was homeless and rough sleeping on-and-off for while. I think my tough upbringing made it difficult for me to cope with life and before long I was getting into trouble on the street which, I admit, made it difficult for people to reach out to me. “Rough sleeping is not all bad. Even though I lost some friends, the relationships I have from there are really important. Sometimes we had a bloody good time! I miss it sometimes, but I don’t want to go back. Really you’re just watching life go by in slow motion and all you worry about is getting some brekkie and getting wasted.
“I was also in poor mental health. Being on the street can make you the loneliest person in the world and your shadow becomes a bottle of drink. “But now I’m starting to turn things around because people stuck with me; they didn’t let go, even when I was a little shit. You might say it was ‘tough love’. “But it’s not always easy to adjust. I still sleep with the window open and still miss being out there, but I am glad that I am over that period. Getting support with my mental health has really helped me adjust and there is still a long road ahead. The best thing you can do is start communicating.” Below: Sleeping rough in Worthing
and considering accommodation options both locally and outside of the area. They also receive information about named individuals who may be particularly vulnerable to rough sleeping, including those who have recently been discharged from prison, left the care system or left hospital. This winter in Worthing, there are 24 night shelter bed spaces for the rough sleeping community. These beds are provided by Worthing Winter Night Shelter faith groups with an additional shelter this year funded by central government and being delivered by Turning Tides. There is also significant supported accommodation available for single homeless people, including beds provided by Turning Tides, Southdown Independent Living Scheme, the YMCA, Sanctuary and Homegroup.
Amanda Eremie, Housing Solutions Manager at Adur & Worthing Councils, says: “Without the support of these charities and organisations, many of whom are heavily reliant on the incredible commitment of volunteers, our provision of beds would be a lot more difficult.” The Councils have received
government funding of £610,000 across two years for its Rough Sleeper Initiative which includes the Rough Sleepers Team. Amongst other things, the money has been spent on further specialist support staff, supporting the Worthing Night Shelter run by Turning Tides and new temporary accommodation for those with the most complex needs.
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Healthy lifestyle makes a ‘happy heart’
Pictured: Happy Hearts’ graduates’ at Hawthorns Primary School, Durrington
t’s never too young to start that’s the motto behind an award-winning, highly innovative programme developed by Adur & Worthing Councils.
Happy Hearts works with four to six-year-olds to encourage them to improve their diet and become more active. The programme is the brainwave of Tammy Waine, Family and Wellbeing Officer at the Councils, who was originally approached by the British Heart Foundation to look at ways of improving the high rates of cardiovascular disease in Adur. Tammy says: “When we suggested working with four to six-year-olds, the initial
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Thank you. Harrison’s attitude towards fruit and vegetables has changed dramatically for the good! It’s gone from bribing him to eat just a small variety of different foods to now eating and even choosing his own healthy snacks or what vegetables we should have with our dinner! - Parent reaction was that they were too young, but the programme has been highly successful.“ Over 96% of parents have noticed a change in their child’s attitude towards healthy living as they respond to an interactive course which is age-appropriate and involves
games, quizzes and just a little bit of homework. The programme has won Tammy a British Heart Foundation ‘Heart Hero’ award and she has now trained up staff from Activ8 for Kids to run the Adur sessions, turning her attention to rolling out the programme in some Worthing schools. Sessions include tasting fruit and vegetables from different colours of the rainbow, guessing the number of teaspoons of sugar in popular snacks, and identifying foods as either ‘everyday food’ or ‘sometimes food’. There is also physical exercise and listening to their heart beats through a stethoscope.
Media campaign opens doors to new tenants
Above: Jordan and Ellie Rome found a new home in Southwick through Opening Doors
local media campaign has helped bring early success to Adur & Worthing Councils’ new free property letting agency. The Opening Doors service has signed up 22 new properties since launching in June with 23 more in the pipeline. Steve Hay, Acquisitions & Landlord Support Coordinator at the Councils, says: “Now a steady trickle of landlords are approaching us, compared to just a handful over the last few years to our previous scheme. The new scheme offers landlords more, so - for example - we are now attracting people who in the past might have been resistant to renting to people on benefits.
agency and launched an eight-week campaign of advertisements in local newspapers, as well as social media posts, leaflets, business cards, an online brochure and a dedicated web page on the Councils’ website. The benefits of using the service for landlords include: •
no fees or commission
rent collection and guaranteed rent for two years (renewable)
comprehensive landlord and tenancy support service
full tenancy sign-up service including: tenancy agreement, inventory, tenant checks and service of documents
“The media campaign caught people’s eye and now landlords are talking to each other,”
legal assistance and court costs paid by the council
a deposit bond equivalent to six weeks’ rent for property damage
The Councils’ Housing and Communications Department created a new identity and logo for the
access to grant assistance for repairs
Landlords are also able to choose their own tenants which have first been vetted by the Councils. They are also eligible to apply for grants of up to £5,000 for property improvements such as upgrading heating systems, insulation, extraction and electrical safety work. The scheme helps the Councils save money on temporary accommodation costs. It also means customers are able to move into a proper home rather than temporary accommodation which could dislocate them from family and friends at a time they most need them.
To find out more, visit: adur-worthing.gov.uk/opening-doors If you’re a landlord and are interested in Opening Doors, call the team on: 01903 221110
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Community Alarms bring peace of mind Above: Sharing a joke whilst discussing community alarm needs
o you, or a friend or relative, need a little extra support to continue living independently? Are you elderly, recovering from a stay in hospital, or simply have ongoing health problems?
to a need for people in the community to be safer in their homes and now, in conjunction with Chichester Careline, offers a range of services and devices which are connected 24-hours a day to support, giving users and their families peace of mind.
Adur & Worthing Councils are offering the first 13 weeks free on their Telecare support service.
Devices include everything from a fall detector and automatic light switch to a medication dispenser, a Mindme alarm and an epilepsy sensor. The cost of the service starts from as little ÂŁ3.75 a week and staff from
The Community Alarm Service was originally set up in 1986 in response
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Adur & Worthing Councils are able to visit your home to discuss your needs and suggest the right devices. West Sussex Fire and Rescue can also visit to complete a free fire safety check, install free smoke alarms, linked to the alarm system and monitored 24/7. Whilst key safes which are also supplied and fitted - are available to help the emergency services enter a property.
Meet Major Edwin Hunt ... Major Edwin Hunt MVO, 99, and living in Lancing, has been using community alarm devices provided by the Council since 2011. His sister Emily, 97, now also lives with him and they each have an alarm pendant, as well as a smoke alarm linked to the fire service. The alarm unit enables them to speak to and hear the Monitoring Centre from anywhere in the home. The pendant can be worn on the wrist or around the neck and when pressed connects them immediately to the Monitoring Centre.
both peace of mind. He says: “Knowing there is someone there 24 hours a day to help in an emergency is a great comfort to us both. Unfortunately we have had to use the services several times, mainly for falls in the home or garden. “Having that personal contact with the Councils for advice and support has also been very helpful over the years.
Knowing there is someone there 24 hours a day to help in an emergency is a great comfort to us both.
“Knowing that the linked smoke detector will contact the Monitoring Centre, even if we are not at home, also makes us feel very safe and secure.”
Once the Queen’s Bargemaster, Major Hunt says that the alarms give them
Above: Emily Hunt, Major Edwin Hunt and Ann Marie Cheeseman, Community Alarm Manager for Adur & Worthing Councils
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Community spirit helps neighbour in need
era, 89, worked as a dental nurse in Worthing all her professional life and now lives alone with her rescue dog, Charlie. She has health conditions but, despite having no immediate family, is independent and active. One day, a neighbour rang Adur & Worthing Councils to say he was worried about Vera as her house was in a very bad state of repair. A member of the Councils’ Home Improvement Agency (HIA) visited Vera to assess her needs. The property was found to have no working heating, no hot water, unsafe electrics, dilapidated windows and doors and unsuitable and inaccessible rooms. Vera was also unable to use the upstairs rooms as she needed a stairlift.
With the help of the Council, Vera was awarded three different grants which would help fund work on the house. Before the improvements began, members of the community helped clear space, and continued to help out as the work was done. “It was very heart-warming to see the community come together to help Vera who had given so much in her working life,” says Rosie Victory, a Home Improvement Officer at Adur & Worthing
Councils, who project-managed the work. “Vera was also very concerned about the disruption for her dog Charlie, so I had to make sure that the house was not bombarded with workmen all at once,” she added. Vera said: “Everyone was so kind to me, working together to make my life so much more comfortable, warm and safe. I particularly enjoyed the company when the tradesmen were in my home!”
Below: Vera and her dog, Charlie, happy in their new surroundings
Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG), are available to home owners or tenants of a housing association or private landlords for adaptations to help a disabled and/or vulnerable person to remain in their own home. Available from Adur & Worthing Councils via referral from West Sussex County Council (WSCC), the grants are means-tested and the first port of call is the Occupational Therapy Service at WSCC. The Adur & Worthing Council Home Improvement Agency (HIA) also administers Discretionary Grants including Repairs Grants and Safe and Warm Grants intended to keep the property safe, warm and weathertight. For further details go to the Adur & Worthing Councils’ website: www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/disabledfacilities-grants 22 | ThriveAW
Training staff as Mental Health First Aiders
e have all experienced a frazzled work colleague, but when does a frazzled colleague become someone who is suffering from a mental health issue and needs help? Adur & Worthing Councils have joined other organisations in training up some of its own staff as Mental Health First Aiders. They learn to recognise a colleague going through a crisis and how to offer initial support. Does a colleague looked constantly exhausted and behave in a stressed manner; have they left a meeting unexpectedly and look emotional, or is a co-worker very quiet and not engaging with the team? These and other signs suggest someone who might benefit from support.
The Councils’ Mental Health First Aiders may then approach the colleague in a sensitive and nonjudgemental way, listening and offering information and practical advice, and also encouraging the colleague to seek help. This could involve talking to their GP or a family member. Are they eating properly, taking enough fresh air or time off? They might also suggest strategies including going to meetings and social events or downloading web apps which could help. Mental Health First Aider and member of the Councils’ Health and Wellbeing team, Tyler Slade said: “We are not therapists. We are here to support people with their lifestyles and help them develop stress management strategies. What works
for one person may not work for another.” Trained up through a course accredited by Mental Health First Aid England (MHFA England), the Mental Health First Aiders, are in place across the Councils in different teams, and their skills are equally useful for people using the Councils’ services. “It’s often helpful with our work outside of the office environment too, but any organisation can do this. Research shows that one in four of us will have dealt with a mental health issue in our lifetime, but people are often wary of talking about it at work because of the fear that it suggests they’re not coping,” says Tyler.
From left to right: AWC staff Jade Marshall, Tyler Slade, Janice Hoiles and Mark Rice. 2nd from right: Cllr David Simmons, Exec. Member for Health & Wellbeing at Adur District Council
For further information on health and wellbeing in Adur and worthing, visit: www.adur-worthing. westsussexwellbeing.org.uk For further information on training up your staff in mental health first aid, visit MHFA England: www.mhfaengland.org
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Events OneStop Junction Do you need support with your digital or online skills, job hunting or personal finances? Or can you volunteer to give that support. OneStop Junction offers a range of free services all under one roof. It has centres in Lancing, Sompting, Southwick, Worthing, Durrington, Fishersgate, Goring, Heene. Info: Find out more about times and locations at www.onestopjunction.org.uk Contact: 01903 221400 / 07917 515299 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Age UK Afternoon Tea Club Come and enjoy an Afternoon Tea Club run by Age UK. £4.50 member-rates. Membership is £10 annually, payable at the clubs. When: 2nd and 4th Friday of the month from 1.00pm - 5.00pm Where: Shoreham Methodist Church, Brunswick Road, Shoreham-by-Sea BN43 5WB Contact: 07904 976736 Info: www.ageukwestsussex.org.uk
Independent Lives social and support group Organised activities such as days out and coffee mornings. Independent Lives is affiliated with the Voice for Disability social and support groups in West Sussex. When: Alternate Wednesdays Where: Southwick Community Centre, 24 Southwick Street, Southwick BN42 4TE Contact: Contact Ian about the timings of this group on 01903 763245 Info: www.independentlives.org
Age UK Social Club and Exercise Classes Age UK has a range of social clubs and exercise classes in the Shoreham, Sompting, Southwick and Lancing area. Info: www.ageukwestsussex.org.uk Prices: Social Club - £2.00. Exercise Class - £2.00. All prices are member-rates. Membership is £10 annually, payable at the clubs. Door-to-door transport is available exclusively for members
Sing Well Community Choir Sing Well Choir are a fun, friendly and inclusive community choir who enjoy singing a wide range of pop, rock, soul, Gospel and show songs. No experience is necessary - just enthusiasm! The first session is free and then £4 a week. (Also held in Worthing) When: Thursdays from 10.00am - 11.30am Where: Shoreham Baptist Church, Western Road, Shoreham BN43 5WD Contact: 07802 537502 / email@example.com Info: www.singwellchoir.co.uk 24 | ThriveAW Magazine 2019
in Adur ... Free Circuit Training Class for adults with FREE kids’ activities Various activities organised by The Conservation Volunteers (TCV), including FREE drop-in circuit training with Vida Active, alongside sports for the children. Also a Forest School and Gardening Club. No booking required. Where: Across Adur and Worthing (especially Fishersgate and Southwick) Info: growingcommunities.tcv.org.uk/events
Mindfulness - support sessions Read and discuss books with your local library’s reading group. (Check with your local library that there are spaces available) When: First Monday of the month at 2pm and 7pm. Second Thursday of the month 2.00pm Where: Shoreham-by-Sea Library, St Mary’s Road, Shoreham BN43 5ZA Contact: 01273 467966 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Cancer Rehabilitation - a group-based on physical activity Impulse Leisure’s Refer Me 2 programme enables GPs or other health professionals to refer high risk patients to their specially designed course aimed at boosting health, fitness and wellbeing. They also run Cardiac, Diabetes, Emotional Wellbeing, Hypertension and Obesity programmes at separate times too. When: Tuesdays from 4.00pm - 5.00pm Where: Adur Community Leisure, Impulse Leisure Lancing Manor, Manor Road, Lancing BN15 0PH Contact: 01903 524624 / Refer.Me@impulseleisure.co.uk / www.impulseleisure.co.uk
Melody for the Mind This is an informal free singing group for people living with dementia and Parkinson’s disease, and their families & carers. Enjoy refreshments and a chat, followed by singing in a relaxed and supportive environment. No singing experience necessary! When: Fortnightly on Fridays 10.30am – 11.30am Where: Southwick Library, Southdown Road, Southwick, BN42 4FT
Reading group Read and discuss books with your local library’s reading group. (Check with your local library that there are spaces available) When: First Monday of the month at 2pm and 7pm. Second Thursday of the month 2.00pm Where: Shoreham-by-Sea Library, St Mary’s Road, Shoreham BN43 5ZA Contact: 01273 467966 / email@example.com
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Events in Meet-Up Mondays social gathering A friendly social gathering for tea and coffee especially for the over 50s. Also runs over Christmas and on bank holidays. From: Every Monday from 11-12 noon Where: Broadwater pub, 4 Broadwater St W, East Worthing BN14 9DA Contact: Diane Guest on firstname.lastname@example.org
STRIVE support group drop-in For people with chronic long-term health conditions, a mix of support sessions with talks, workshops and taster sessions for people with chronic long-term health conditions. Free refreshments provided. When: Weekly on Tuesdays from 11am - 1pm Where: East Worthing Community Centre, Pages Lane, Worthing, BN11 2NQ Info: Call The Community House Team on 01903 215799 to book your place
Guild Care Info Hub Find out about the charity’s services, job opportunities, volunteering roles and fundraising events – all whilst enjoying free tea and cake! When: Fortnightly on Mondays from 2- 4pm Where: Frank Cave Annexe, Methold House, North Street, Worthing Info: 01903 327327 / email@example.com
Worthing Veterans Drop-in A monthly drop-in for military veterans, their families and carers. Held on the 1st Monday of each month, the drop-in will provide social support and access to a range of welfare services.Worthing Veterans Drop In Centre When: 1st Monday of every month (except Bank Holidays) 10.30 - 12 noon Where: The Gordon Room, Worthing Town Hall, Chapel Road Info: firstname.lastname@example.org
Green Gym Durrington and Salvington The Conservation Volunteers’ weekly Green Gym is free, friendly, for adults and children and all tools are provided. Just drop-in - no booking required. When: Wednesdays from 11.00am - 1.00pm Where: Whitebeam Woods, (Whitebeam Road entrance), Durrington BN13 3PJ Contact: Contact Graeme to confirm location on 07970 860938 info: www.growingcommunities.tcv.org.uk
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Worthing ... OneStop Junction Do you need support with your digital or online skills, job hunting or personal finances? Or can you volunteer to give that support. OneStop Junction offers a range of free services all under one roof. It has centres in Worthing, Durrington, Fishersgate, Goring, Heene, Lancing, Sompting, and Southwick. Drop in to find out more. Info: onestopjunction.org.uk Contact: 01903 221400 / 07917 515299 / email@example.com
Memory Cafe - Dementia Friendly Worthing & District A free service in a relaxed setting for local people living with memory loss, Alzheimerâ€™s or other dementias, and their carers. Supported by trained staff and with activities. When: Tuesday 3 December 2019 at 2.00 - 4.00pm Where: Impulse Leisure, Manor Road, Lancing BN15 0PH Info: 07903 720208 / www.dementiafriendlyworthing.org
Falls Prevention for the over 60s Come along to this twice weekly FREE fitness and social activity for the over 60s focusing on falls prevention, flexibility, strength, balance. There will also be tea and biscuits, conversation and friendship! No need to book. Free parking and free session (and a ÂŁ1.50 charge for tea and biscuits) When: Mondays and Fridays from 10.30am - 11.30am Where: Eastbrook Manor Community Centre, West Road, Fishersgate BN41 1QH Info: 07766 744871 / firstname.lastname@example.org / www.vidaactive.club/for-over-60-s
Families in Mind Worthing - Play & Chat Drop In A drop-in for parents and children from zero to pre-school age. Pop in for a cuppa and bring lunch for a friendly and supportive chat. When: Weekly on Wednesdays from 12.30 - 2.30pm Where: Maybridge Community Church, 77 The Strand, Worthing BN12 6DR Info: 01903 268107 / email@example.com The group also runs on a Thursday from 10.00am - 12.00pm at The Sidney Walter Centre, Sussex Rd, Worthing BN11 1DS
Men in Sheds A place of leisure where men come together to work. Members share the tools and resources they need to work on projects of their own choosing at their own pace and in a safe, friendly and inclusive venue. Activities usually involve making or mending in wood (e.g. carpentry, wood turning, carving, and furniture renovation). Reclamation, reuse and restoration feature strongly. When: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10.30am - 2.30pm Where: The Rowans, Steeple View, Worthing BN13 1RP Info: meninshedsworthing.org.uk
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Adur & Worthing Councils are taking a leadership role in helping to improve health and wellbeing in our communities. Through ThriveAW magaz...
Published on Dec 17, 2019
Adur & Worthing Councils are taking a leadership role in helping to improve health and wellbeing in our communities. Through ThriveAW magaz...