Natural Achievers Kirklees
Froglife has been contracted by Community Partnerships, Kirklees Council, as part of the MENtal Wellbeing Programme, to deliver our Natural Achievers programme. The programme has received additional funding from South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust – Creative Minds and City Connect, West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s, go:walking programmes. The use of creative activities in healthcare has been shown to increase self-esteem, provide a sense of purpose, develop social skills, help community integration and improve service users’ quality of life. South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation recognises these benefits and the Creative Minds strategy underlines the Trust’s commitment to having a creative approach to service delivery as well as promoting more opportunities for individuals/groups to develop and grow creatively.
Froglife has been formally chosen as a creative partner by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation. As a partner we are part of a strong growing infrastructure of community organisations who are working with the local NHS to provide creative projects who use Trust services.
Froglife is providing community-based physical activities using the natural environment to provide training in a wide range of skills and to develop peer support/friendship and social opportunities. Froglife’s Natural Achievers is a tried and tested programme of activities that works with groups of individuals suffering from disadvantage for a range of reasons. Primarily, but not exclusively, men are drawn from across all sector. Groups complete a six week group activity followed by a six week personal project. On completion of the six week personal project a celebration event is hosted.
Natural Achievers is helping men to improve and maintain health and enable them to make friends. It helps to combat stigma associated with mental ill-health and promote the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’. Natural Achievers enables these men to do something positive to help our natural world whilst benefiting from being outdoors.
“It helps just by being outdoors in a beautiful place surrounded by wildlife, but then I’m also able to contribute something and I feel like its being valued. I’m not treated like a social outcast, I am respected and encouraged in all I do here, and I love working with all the different groups” previous project participants.
The project started at the beginning of April 2016 and has been working along canal towpaths to improve the biodiversity value, at an allotment site and also at Dewsbury Country Park. Project Participants have carried out a wide range of improvements to these areas, including habitat creation and management, species surveying and building wildlife homes. To find our more information about the project please contact INFO@froglife.org.