ActivLives: Keeping People Connected

ActivLives is a small, grassroots charity which has been working in Ipswich and across Suffolk for 13 years, supporting and motivating people to improve their own health and well-being; keeping people connected with their communities to reduce social isolation and loneliness and providing access to learning, training and volunteering opportunities to enable people to gain skills and employment.

ActivLives normally provides a wide range of face to face activities and support including, community gardening, Men in Shed projects, singing and physical / sport activities such as walking football, Boccia, New Age Kurling, seated and standing OTAGO exercise, health walks and social activity. We also have specialist hubs for people living with dementia and their carers and for carers and former carers. These activities bring people together to enable them to meet and make new friends, build support networks in the community, volunteer and learn and share skills.

Unfortunately, we have had to close all our activities because of Coronavirus which has had a great impact on the organisation. However, we are a very flexible and resilient organisation with very passionate and dedicated staff and key volunteers who are currently keeping an eye on our gardens and exploring different ways so that we can keep in touch and support our members and volunteers while they are self-isolating at home.

For those who have access to the internet we will, over the coming weeks, be posting a variety of videos that might interest not only our members, but also the general public who may not know about our organisation. We will have general information to support people through the lock down. There are videos showing how to keep moving with seated and standing exercise for people to do safely at home with our lovely Step by Step instructor Jo.

There are singing videos on our Facebook page with Gina, our amazing music facilitator who leads our community singing groups. There are two quizzes each week, gardening videos will be coming from the ActivGardens team and a reminiscence arts project is being planned.

For those members and volunteers who cannot access the internet we are keeping in touch by phone and helping in whatever way we can. That may be doing some shopping, collecting prescriptions, just having a weekly chat on the phone or setting up WhatsApp groups so members from our different groups can keep connected while the sessions are closed.

We hope that people who haven’t heard of us or don’t currently use our services across Suffolk will enjoy following our home page, joining in with our videos or finding the information we post useful during these unprecedented times.

For more information visit www.activlives.org.uk.

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