Supporting vulnerable adults
Abberton Rural Training (ART) were funded to run 2 mirrored projects in 2 locations in Essex, across the summer school holidays: one in Colchester and the other in Chelmsford. ART are an education-based charity working with vulnerable residents of all ages, to remove barriers, one of which they identified was physical activity.
The young people they are engaged with are vulnerable in many ways. From poor mental health to anti-social behaviour, this programme offered support for these young people, whilst not at school, and during the school holidays. Offering the provision of one day a week to their most vulnerable people over the 6-week break, had a positive impact on the mental wellbeing of those that attended, subsequently positively impacting on their friends, family and the wider community.
The weekly summer group offered a range of activities such as walking, mindfulness and therapeutic gardening activities, helping to increase physical activity levels, establish conversations and help provide time for participants to socialise. After establishing a need to provide a physical activity element at their centres, the charity hoped it would provide the particularly vulnerable and at-risk individuals, a chance to participate in activities which taught them mindfulness.
Active Essex offered advice and guidance prior to the provision, helping support the group to access the Sport England Together Fund, enabling ART to facilitate the project. It was important for the charity to create a safe space for young people to socialise and get active, whilst also having access to a mental health counsellor.