Community Conversations - the places where we live, take part and play.
Posted by See Me, 3 April 2018
Communities are the places and people with whom we live, take part and play. So we think there is real potential to enhance social connection and encourage supportive relationships with others, to improve health and wellbeing in communities. On the other hand social isolation and loneliness can have a negative impact on both, so it’s important we work to tackle stigma, bringing communities together.
We would like to invite you to a conversation to explore your thoughts on the relationships you have within your community; what might work locally to support communities (for example, more opportunities to connect with people through community activities such as Village Fetes and Street Festivals or groups such as walking or lunch clubs); and what national support would be useful.
We want these to be enjoyable and informal conversations and therefore invite you to join us for lunch beforehand.
We expect the chat to last about 90 minutes, and there will be a chance to network afterwards.
We will be using what you tell us to inform our programme, as well as our response to the Scottish Government’s consultation, A Connected Scotland - its strategy to ensure communities are empowered and connected, and that everyone is able to participate and experience wellbeing.
Community Conversations hosted by See Me
Friday 13th April, 12.15pm-3pm (lunch until 12.45pm)
at Spectrum Centre, Inverness (beside the bus station)
Wednesday 25th April, 12.15pm-3pm (lunch until 12.45pm)
at See Me, 51 Wilson Street, Glasgow, G1 1UZ
Please join us.
If you are interested in coming along, please sign up on the Eventbrite page (click the relevant link above). If you are unable to sign up on Eventbrite, please ring 0141 530 1111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For further information on why we are having these conversations, please see below.
There has been growing interest in the importance of communities to enable positive mental wellbeing, and tackle issues related to social isolation. With regards to mental health, supportive social networks are an essential (and sometimes overlooked) element of enabling recovery.
Research has consistently shown the importance of connections between people in maintaining wellbeing.
A few examples from the academic literature of things that are beneficial:
- Joining and maintaining groups;
- Diverse and active networks;
- Interventions targeting social disconnection and enhancing social identity;
- Social cohesion, which can mitigate the impact of poverty on mental health.
- Promoting a greater sense of belonging among residents;
- Neighbourhood social capital tends to also be beneficial for individuals.
Unfortunately, sometimes there are issues that get in the way, such as:
- Lack of social confidence;
- Limited opportunities or places to engage with others;
- Anticipated stigma;
- Experienced discrimination (resulting in reduced access to social capital);
- Barriers due to inappropriate communication channels;
- Transport issues;
- Lack of digital skills.
The What Works Wellbeing Centre have identified a Theory of Change from the literature, which suggests how community wellbeing can be improved, and we’re keen to hear your views.