Sheffield-based housing association social prescribing service hailed as health solution in Government’s new Loneliness Strategy

South Yorkshire Housing Association (SYHA) joined the Minister for Loneliness, Tracey Crouch at the launch of the Government’s first ever loneliness strategy this week. The association were invited after their   has been featured as a solution for improving health, which is set to be accessible across the nation by 2023.

Social prescribing enables GPs to offer non-medical treatments to people who are experiencing loneliness and isolation. Individuals are linked with a social prescribing advisor who helps them to connect with groups and organisations in their communities.

SYHA has seen remarkable  improvements in their customers’ health and well-being across Doncaster and Barnsley as a result of social prescribing, with 81% of customers feeling more confident in managing their health, 68% of customers reducing their GP visits, and money saved for the NHS.

Joe Hall, Service Manager at SYHA said “The launch event with Tracey Crouch  was extremely moving, with so much passion to tackle loneliness across the country. We’ve seen first-hand how powerful social prescribing can be to help reduce loneliness and isolation, and our experiences have shown how important meaningful connections are for everyone’s health and well-being.

Thank you to the team for involving us in the strategy, we hope it will support us to continue to deliver social prescribing across our communities.”

Lisa, a social prescribing customer in Barnsley said “The advisors have offered me practical and emotional support throughout, and their encouragement has been incredible.”

SYHA also delivers the six year Big Lottery funded project  , which reduces loneliness and isolation for those aged 50 and over. In the past three years the project has worked in partnership with volunteers and a number of organisations across the city including Sheffield Mind, SOAR Community and Ignite Imaginations to support over 2,500 older people.

Ruth Hawke, Programme Delivery Manager for Age Better in Sheffield said, “We are so pleased that Government have released a comprehensive strategy which combines a number of solutions to tackle loneliness. We know the impact that loneliness has on health, and it’s encouraging to see a significant commitment from government to work together with organisations across the country.”

Age Better in Sheffield will shortly be announcing a number of new projects for people aged 50 and over to get involved with. You can find out more by emailing agebettersheff@syha.co.uk, or calling Joanne on 0114 2900 294.

ENDS

Opening hours over Christmas and New Year

We’ll be taking a couple of days off over Christmas to enjoy the festivities.

When our office is closed, Liberty Gas take calls directly from our customers and respond to emergency gas repairs.

All emergency calls relating to gas central heating boilers or gas fires should be reported by calling 033 0333 5789

All other emergency repairs should be reported by calling 0800 1380 380 or 0114 2900 200 (press 1).

Our Wellington Street office opening hours for the next couple of weeks are:

  • Friday 22nd December – office will close at 5pm
  • Monday 25th December – closed
  • Tuesday 26th December – closed
  • Wednesday 27th December – open as normal
  • Thursday 28th December – open as normal
  • Friday 29th December – office will close at 5pm
  • Monday 1st January – closed
  • Tuesday 2nd January – reopen as normal

Annual Report to Customers launches

Our Annual Report to Customers for 2017 is now available to read online.

This year we’ve turned the Annual Report to Customers into a separate website, which means that you can view the full report on any device, wherever and whenever you want.

The report gives you a summary of what we’ve been up to over the past year, using information from our more detailed Financial Statement and Value for Money Statement.

You can read the Annual Report to Customers for 2017 by clicking here or by visiting annualreport2017.syha.co.uk (you don’t need to add ‘www.’ before it).

We’re recruiting a Customer Connections Apprentice!

Are you or a family member aged between 16 and 24? Looking for paid work? Then we’ve got an exciting opportunity for you!
We’re recruiting a Customer Connection Apprentice to work at our Wellington Street office in Sheffield. As a Customer Connection Apprentice you’ll work closely with our Customer Services team, helping customers with their enquiries and solve problems. You’ll also work with our Engagement Officer to help customers get involved in the work we do.
We’d love to recruit a young person that lives in one of our homes, so if you know someone who’d be interested please let them know about the role.
To find out more about the role please take a look at the job description and personal specification.
If you’d like to find out more give us a call on 0114 2908356 or email j.smith@syha.co.uk.

Ending isolation for older people in the Burngreave Ward

What’s it like to grow older in the Burngreave area? Want to learn how to capture and share your stories? Want to help create a toolkit to combat isolation for older people in the Burngreave Ward?

On Saturday 19th March, 10.00-7pm, Age Better in Sheffield are holding a special event at the Vestry Hall that aims to bring together people from across Burngreave to capture stories about growing older in Burngreave, and celebrate what makes living in the area so special.

The stories that are captured from the day, and by the community in the following weeks, will go on to inform the creation of an ‘end isolation’ toolkit which will go out to 7,000 homes in Burngreave. The aim of the toolkit is to give residents the tools to help people spot the triggers of isolation, and give them courage to connect with neighbours to help make people less isolated.

Throughout the Vestry Hall event, guests will have a chance to learn new skills such as photography and film making so they can capture stories from their community, listen to inspirational local residents and community organisations, watch local dance, theatre and music groups, all which will culminate in a free meal at 5pm with dishes that represent the diverse community that makes up Burngreave.

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Click on the image for the full flyer

Performances and sessions on the day include:

  • Photography, film, drawing and writing  masterclasses
  • Theatre workshop from national company Cardboard Citizens
  • Diary room
  • Chair aerobics
  • Traditional Somali dance
  • Live performance from Sheffield reggae band Truly Apparent
  • Free sit down meal from 5pm

 

 

 

Proceedings will get underway at 10am, with Deputy Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Denise Fox, opening up the Speakers’ Corner which gives local people and organisations the chance to share their views about the area, growing older, and experiences of isolation throughout the day.

Nasreen Suleman, Toolkit Co-ordinator for Age Better in Sheffield, said: “We’re really looking forward to bringing everyone together, talking about local issues and how we can work together. It’s going to be a real party and we’re encouraging people of all ages and backgrounds to come down and share this special day with us.

“Involving local people in designing the toolkit is essential – it’s the only way to ensure that we meet the unique demands of the Burngreave ward.”

Burngreave is the first of 5 wards to be involved in the development of the Neighbourhoods Toolkit over the next 6 years.

To book your place click here or just turn up on the day. Families and people of all ages are welcome. If you’d like to find out more about the event, simply visit www.agebettersheff.co.uk/toolkit.

It’s time to talk about mental health

We’re are calling on people across South Yorkshire to join in national Time to Talk Day tomorrow. The day aims to end the stigma around mental health and get people talking about what’s troubling them.

Mental health problems affect one in four people every year but many of us don’t ask for help and hide how we’re feeling.

We provide a variety of mental health support across the region, ranging from our Barnsley Dementia Support Service and Age Better in Sheffield project, to more specialist housing support such as the Connect 3 or Take Notice projects based in Sheffield.

Time To Change Day

All of the services on offer are free and focus on personalised support which puts both the physical and mental health needs of the person first.

Juliann Hall, our Director of Care, Health and Wellbeing, said: “Mental health doesn’t discriminate against anyone – it can affect all of us, at any point in our lives.

“Whether you’re just feeling down, lonely or have a more serious diagnosed condition, we’ve got support available which can help.

“The more comfortable we all are talking about mental health, the easier it is for us to spot the signs of potential problems and do something about it. If you’d like to talk to us about support in your local area, please do get in touch.”

Throughout the day we will be joining thousands of organisations across the country tweeting using the hashtag #timetotalk

If you’d like to find out more about the mental health services we offer just visit the LiveWell section of our website.

Award Winning Personalisation

We are very proud of our Personalisation Team for winning the Personalisation Award at LaingBuisson’s Independent Specialist Care Awards last week. 

 

personalisation-team

 

The Independent Specialist Care Awards celebrates outstanding innovators and performers in the UK Specialist Care sector.

In a sector that too often hits the headlines for the wrong reasons, the Independent Specialist Care Awards gives a welcome opportunity to shine a light on the good work and innovative thinking that has driven the independent sector to its position today; the dominant provider of UK specialist care.

 

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With over 25 years in the sector, LaingBuisson is well positioned to celebrate excellence in independent and third-sector healthcare, and continues to take great pleasure in having the opportunity to do so.

 

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Our dedicated Personalisation team is transforming services and the customer experience across SYHA.

“we see our role as facilitating customer-led change in health, care and housing through radical and innovative co-design of these sectors”. Head of Personalisation, Ruby Smith

 

Our Over2You programme funded by the Department of Health is one example of how we are driving sector-wide change, redefining the role of the customer and the provider. The award also recognises how we used creative co-design methods to engage people in city wide investment through Ageing Better; bringing £6m to Sheffield to reduce loneliness and isolation for people over 50. These are just two of many projects that are starting to make an impact into our customers and local communities.

Speaking about the award Head of Personalisation, Ruby Smith said:

“it’s fantastic to receive the Laing Buisson Personalisation award, it recognises the brilliant work being done across SYHA to improve the health, care and housing sector for the people who access it. But, by the very nature of co-design, we haven’t won this award on our own, our customers have played an equally vital role in our success, evidencing how meaningful coproduction can achieve outstanding results”