New wave of funding for community mental health projects across Lincolnshire

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Over £300,000 of community funding has been earmarked for a variety of organisations and groups that help people manage their mental health problems across Lincolnshire.

The beneficiaries all belong to the county’s Managed Care Network, a collection of community groups which offer support through various activities to help people recovering from mental ill health.

Funding comes direct from the Mental Health Promotion Fund, which was established by Lincolnshire County Council and is managed by Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

In total, 46 projects have benefitted from a share of funding this time around and themes include everything from local social and friendship groups, sports coaching and physical activities through to creative therapy and support for carers.

One of the projects, which received a portion of £4,000 of the funding, is the Community Interest Company Sage Gardener’s ‘Friendships with Nature’ initiative. Based in the heart of the Lincolnshire countryside, it offers light gardening and craft sessions for people suffering from dementia and their carers.

Group director Jane Newman said: “We’ve been lucky enough to be involved in gardening, floristry and other rural activities most of our lives. This has benefitted our health so we are now opening up our friendly garden to give others the chance to share some of these experiences first hand.

“We are passionate about being outdoors and working with nature and look forward to welcoming people along to meet new friends, have a go at gardening or craft activities and also enjoy some lunch in a relaxing location.”

Find out more about the project by visiting the website: www.sagegardener.co.uk

Another wellbeing initiative with an outdoor flavour is Hill Holt Wood’s ‘New Leaf’ woodland stewardship and heritage craft project.

With funding worth £8,000, the weekly groups offer participants a chance to use traditional tools and techniques to craft items out of natural products foraged from the forest.

Hill Holt health coordinator Kate Mitchell said the activity was perfect for anyone wanting to embrace their Lincolnshire surroundings.

“The project is aimed at anyone who needs time to re-centre or refocus their lives, or they may want to take the opportunity to socialise with others and get outside,” she said.

“We feel that this project is particularly beneficial to people experiencing social isolation, for carers while their cared ones are being looked after elsewhere, or for people out of work, or suffering from anxiety, stress or depression.”

For more information on how to get involved in the New Leaf sessions contact Kate on 01636 892836.

In total, 2,784 people are expected to directly benefit from the range of activities provided by the Managed Care Network. • For a full list of the projects involved, call 01529 22223, email mcn@lpft.nhs.uk, or visit the website at www.lpft.nhs.uk/mcn.