As well as worsening longstanding health inequalities, responding to COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of place-based approaches to public health. In a borough as diverse as Lambeth, working with – and within – communities is key to meeting challenges revealed by the pandemic.
Solutions from the ground up
Lambeth Wellbeing Fund has helped communities in Lambeth support each other to improve health and wellbeing since 2015. The approach encourages solutions from the ground up and builds on local skills and knowledge, taking a hyper-local approach. The Fund also supports individuals and local groups living in Lambeth to apply for funding to improve health and wellbeing in their neighbourhood, that can be turned into projects.
In 2022/23 Lambeth Together, our local health and care partnership, as part of its commitment to address health inequalities, invested more in the Wellbeing Fund with a record £280,000 awarded to 28 Lambeth voluntary and community organisations in grants of up to £10,000 each.
Word from the Cabinet
Cllr Jim Dickson, Lambeth Council Cabinet Member for Healthier Communities, said: “The pandemic has worsened existing health inequalities. Community-based health and wellbeing projects like these are a vital part of recovery and supporting them is a priority for the Council and our partners”
All the projects are FREE to access, if you live in Lambeth, and support a wide range of people and communities with sessions for women and men, young and older people, people with physical and mental health disabilities, and Lambeth’s Black, Portuguese, and Asian communities which experience some of the poorest health outcomes. As well as talking groups, self-care and counselling, funded projects work for wellbeing include:
- Physical exercise for older or vulnerable adults with mental health needs and young people including those with disabilities
- Creativity for every age group including music and drumming, peer-led creative workshops, Tai chi and dance, and creative writing.
- Food and cookery classes, healthy eating, and food meet-ups for older Vietnamese and Chinese/Vietnamese former refugees with long-term health conditions.
- Gardening and being in nature including sessions for older people.
- Yoga and meditation including sessions for men who prefer not to go to mixed classes.
- Assistive technology and DIY classes.
This is a two-year funding programme and projects will be evaluated on their outcomes early in 2023. Successful projects will then be awarded a further year’s funding.
- The Lambeth Wellbeing Fund (LWF) has a proven track record of funding local action to deliver improved health and wellbeing outcomes. The average grant in previous years has been £5k and the fund usually awards over £70k year. The Fund is managed by a partnership between London Community Foundation, Project Smith and Lambeth Together.
- For a full list of all the projects, locations, who they set out to help and how, see: Microsoft Word – Organisation CDS (londoncf.org.uk)
- Lambeth Together have launched a programme of innovative Health and Wellbeing Hubs across the borough to improve health and wellbeing at neighbourhood level.