LAL showcases Health and Wellbeing provision and launches social prescribing work in Accrington

Lancashire Adult Learning has successfully launched its participation in social prescribing after a Health and Wellbeing showcase in Accrington.

Working in partnership with Peel House Medical Practice in Accrington, LAL’s Healthier Hyndburn event at Accrington Town Hall attracted more than 100 people who came along to try out a range of Health and Wellbeing activities and initiatives.

Social prescribing is about connecting people to non-medical support in the community – an example being where education is prescribed as an alternative to medication, empowering people with the right tools to become self-managing and resilient.

‘Have a go’ learning experiences on the day included healthier microwave cookery, chair based drumming, Mandala stone art, the Five Ways to Wellbeing, and First Aid, as well as Family Learning, Volunteering and ICT and Digital activities. There was also the chance to discover the range of Health and Wellbeing courses that can be offered in the Hyndburn area.

Karen Coburn, 53, from Rising Bridge, said: “I found out about Lancashire Adult Learning while attending East Lancashire Recovery College.

“I do a lot of meditation, but I wanted to do a course more focused on mindfulness. It has been excellent and it been the catalyst for me to meditate again and life is better when I meditate.

“I have taken part in Stress Awareness and the Five Ways to Wellbeing, and the exercises have been designed to suit different situations. We’re hoping to keep the numbers up and become a self-sufficient group.

“I also signed up for First Aid and a horticulture course. I’ve always been interested in horticulture but I have never really considered it as a career – and I’m currently having a career rethink at the moment.”

Megan Smith, 29 from Accrington, attended with two of her children. She said: “I have found the Healthier Hyndburn event very helpful. I have an older daughter at school who has learning difficulties, and I have picked up some useful techniques that I can take home with me to be able to support her in her learning.

“I also found the microwave cookery sessions interesting. The food was really simple and tasty, and I’m taking home some menus so that I can cook healthier meals.”

Nicola Hall, Head of Curriculum and Strategic Partnerships at Lancashire Adult Learning, said: “Our Healthier Hyndburn event was a very positive start to our involvement with social prescribing as well over 100 people were able to participate in vibrant learning activities designed to help them manage their own wellness.

“Those who attended will also now be able to access a range of community learning courses in the Hyndburn area to start their learning journey in order to better look after their Health and Wellbeing.

“We had fantastic feedback from learners and visitors who felt thoroughly inspired by the activities that they had participated in and I would like to thank all of our partner organisations who helped contribute to the overall success of the launch.”

Michelle Pilling, Deputy Chair of the East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group said: “On display today at Lancashire Adult Learning’s Healthier Hyndburn showcase is the art of the possible – a whole spectrum of ideas to support health and wellbeing and in so many creative ways.

“The LAL team are fantastic, demonstrating how they are able to make a difference to people’s lives in a powerful way. On display is a snapshot of the potential that they are able to offer to communities, and it is also excellent to see so much partnership work in action.”

Any businesses and organisations in Lancashire who would be interested in working with Lancashire Adult Learning’s Health and Wellbeing Team can contact Sarah Haworth at s.haworth@lal.ac.uk

As well as its targeted delivery and partnership work, Lancashire Adult Learning offers a huge range of planned provision across the Red Rose County, from Arts and Crafts to Humanities classes, Languages to Health and Wellbeing sessions and Functional Skills English and Maths and Employability courses.

In February 2018, Lancashire Adult Learning was named as the inaugural winner of the national Adult and Community Learning Provider of the Year at the TES FE Awards.

Further information about Lancashire Adult Learning can be found at www.lal.ac.uk or by calling 0333 003 1717.

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