Our centres are based in working class neighbourhoods throughout the entire region. Our health improvement projects are based in areas of high health inequalities in the greater Belfast area, Derry, Tyrone, Fermanagh, Armagh, Lisburn and Ards Peninsula. Our Centres are listed below. Click to expand the Centre listing to view in more detail.
Everything that Healthy Living Centres do has a mental health aspect and impact. The role of the Mental Health Working Group is to enable and assist Healthy Living Centres in fully realising their potential with regard to promoting resilience within their teams of staff and volunteers so that they look after themselves whilst providing mental health support within their neighbourhoods. In addition, the group hosts an annual mental health mobilisation on #WorldMentalHealthDay.
Healthy Living Centres have always excelled when it comes to promoting and facilitating physical activity with their programmes complement. 5K runs and walks, Exercise by Referral, cycling and swimming all feature prominently as core aspects of what HLCs do best. This Working Group has prioritised walking within the Take 5 context as a simple means of enjoying physical activity whilst taking care of your mental health.
Around 450,000 in the north of Ireland live with long-term, persistent pain. Our Pain Support Programmes are designed to improve the mental health of those who suffer from pain, enhance their social inclusion, facilitate routine gentle movement, encourage people to own their pain while advocating caution and self-care with regard to using pain medication.
While our population is beset with conditions such as obesity, many young families and the elderly can often experience seasonal hunger because of poverty. The role of the Food Health Working Group is to enable Healthy Living Centres to adopt a pro-active policy and positive practices within their communities, promoting and facilitating a healthier approach to food and nutrition. We are now working in collaboration with Safefood Ireland.
Smoking is still the single greatest cause of chronic disease, especially in working class areas. Studies have shown that smokers are four times more likely to succeed in quitting with help from stop smoking services than if they do it alone. Our cessation programmes and our regional mobilisation each year are designed to enable smokers to become Proud Quitters.
SPRING Social Prescribing
The SPRING Social Prescribing project is a partnership led by Bogside & Brandywell Health Forum of behalf of the Healthy Living Centre Alliance and Scottish Communities for Health and Wellbeing. As the largest co-ordinated project of its kind, a network of 30 community-led health organisations has come together to deliver Social Prescribing services in communities across Northern Ireland and Scotland.