Social Prescribing Day 2022

On 10th March 2022 The Social Prescribing Network are celebrating #SocialPrescribingDay.

The event aims to recognising local community groups and projects which have kept us healthy throughout the pandemic and beyond.

We want to recognise our amazing Social Prescribing team and our partners (PCNs, OHP) who work so hard to provide patients with the best possible support. The Active Wellbeing Society provides a bespoke Social Prescribing service that starts with personalised care in around practices. Below are just a few stories from patients who have benefited from this service.

So, what is social prescribing?

Social prescribing connects people to practical and emotional community support, through social prescribing link workers, based in GP practices and through Self-referrals or from all local agencies. Link workers have time to build trusting relationships, start with what matters to the person, create a shared plan, and introduce people to community support.

It helps people get more control over their healthcare, to manage their needs and in a way that suits them. It can especially help people who:

  • have one or more long-term condition
  • need support with their mental health
  • are lonely or isolated
  • have complex social needs which affect their wellbeing.

At The Active Wellbeing Society our Social Prescribing Link Workers work with over 50 different surgeries across Birmingham, to identify and support patients by supporting referring into a range of non-clinical activities such as volunteering opportunities, social groups, gardening session, befriending calls, cookery classes, healthy eating advice and family activities.

Our Social prescribing Link Workers help and support patients with range of diverse needs, offering support and practical advice that makes a difference in their patients’ lives

‘It gives me confidence to go out with people and interact with other people. It creates that avenue of relief for me. I’m now able to turn those negatives into positives.’ – Art (Patient and Walking Volunteer, Iridium Medical Practice)

You want help and that’s where having a Social Prescriber helps because it calms your fears and it’s a solution-based service. I think that’s better than sort of patching it up with a plaster.’ – Alyssa (Sutton Park Social Group)

“The group has now given me a purpose in life and has had a big positive impact on my mental health.” –  Maisie (Cotteridge Walking Group)

‘With their support, I started really pushing for changes myself. I was able get a new job where I feel so much better… You’re made to feel like you are part of a family.’ – David (Phone Support)

“I feel better in myself. It’s hard to describe, before I wouldn’t say I was suicidal, but I’d have thoughts, that you know, I was useless, and everybody would be better off without me. And I’m slowly getting back to how I was before.” – Gemma (Social Prescribing and Listen & Connect Support)

‘It helps my mental wellbeing because I look forward to this every Tuesday. I live alone. So, I come out and we have a little, you know, we have a banter, we have a good laugh.’ – Joe (Walking Group)

Social Prescribing is a referral programme that provides people with alternative ways of addressing their own emotional and mental health with personalised care that starts in and around health centres. Click here to read more about Social Prescribing. 

Sameena Bibi
Author: Sameena Bibi

Marketing support officer at The Active Wellbeing Society.