A community approach
to health & wellbeing
We receive funding from The National Lottery Community Fund and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs.
The National Lottery Community Fund
Thanks to the players of the National Lottery, £3 million funding has been granted for the SPRING Social Prescribing health project to reduce pressure on GPs while improving the health and wellbeing of patients across Northern Ireland and Scotland.
GPs and other medical professionals can refer patients to take part in community activities to reduce their isolation and dependence on medication. The new health project will run for three years initially and will support 8,000 people aged 18 +
Kate Beggs, The National Lottery Community Fund Northern Ireland Director
“Thanks to National Lottery players this project will be able to make a big difference to people across Northern Ireland and Scotland.
“Bogside and Brandywell Health Forum are providing a valuable connection between the health service and the community, building on the strengths that already exist, to improve people’s lives.”
Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs
The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) have invested additional funding of £491,000 to support social prescribing in rural areas up to March 2021. The rural enhancement fund will provide access to transport and support services with the overall aim of encouraging rural dwellers to take ownership of their health and well-being.
The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) are also investing in the project to enhance implementation in rural NI:
Fiona McCandless Deputy Secretary, Department of Agriculture Environment and Rural Affairs said: “Social prescribing has the potential to provide solutions to transport and access challenges facing rural dwellers who need to access services. This project will encourage rural dwellers to take ownership of their health and well-being by availing of practical interventions and support that are accessible to them in their local areas, without the need and reliance on medical services. This is an extremely good-fit with our Tackling Rural Poverty and Social Isolation Programme and could provide the basis of a long-term approach to supporting a more sustainable approach to health and well-being”.
Northern Ireland Housing Executive
The Northern Ireland Housing Executive has invested funding in a pilot scheme to support social prescribing of vulnerable tenants. The scheme was launched in March 2020 and will provide access to support services for Housing Executive tenants with the overall aim of encouraging clients to take ownership of their health and wellbeing.