Hi, I’m Emma, a Public Health Improvement Officer and I have been working on Well Doncaster since it started in 2015. I’ve been able to see the programme develop over the last 4 years and expand its approach in other communities in the borough. I am supporting the Central area of Doncaster and this blog with focus on the Balby and Balby Bridge area.
Balby is one of Doncaster’s most diverse communities, located just outside the town centre and I have really enjoyed getting out and about these last few months meeting residents and groups.
We have held a number of community workshops to build on the research gathered from resident community researchers recruited through the Get Doncaster Moving work with Sport England.
The insight gathered by the ‘Community Explorers’ provided themes for the wider community to discuss and develop into action plans to address some of the needs of the community around physical activity, communication and skills development. A new round of Community Explorers shave been recruited across the Well Communities with two Explorers from Balby. We are excited to see what insight they have gathered and how it can influence and inform community development
In the new year there will be a networking, market place style event for community organisations and service in Blaby to come together to share, find out what else is happening in their community and see opportunities to work together.
Along with collaborating with residents, we have been linking with the Primary Care Networks for Balby to see how Well Doncaster can support the network in addressing the health inequalities facing the community.
Primary care networks are a key feature of the NHS Long Term Plan and aims to build and support the development of proactive, personalised, coordinated and more integrated health and social care services.
After meeting with the Clinical Director for the Central area Well Doncaster is supporting the establishment of a Fibromyalgia peer group located in their community. Building on the established successful per group in the Bentley, this group hopes to offer peer support around self-management, better understanding of their condition and opportunities for specialist to attend and provide education and support. The monthly group will be launched in January.
To respond to the insight gathered by the Community Explorers and subsequent workshops, Get Doncaster Moving have commissioned a marketing company called BJL to use the insight and develop engaging marketing and communications materials. The team wanted to see Balby and so in November they visited local churches proving tea and toast as well as household supplies and food to some of Balby’s most vulnerable residents. Played a game of bingo with Balby Tenants And Residents Association, sang along with local toddler and parents at a session at the Balby Family Hub, enjoyed a cuppa with locals at a knit and natter sessions and visited a community centre before enjoying a bowl of homemade soup at local café The Platform. It was a jam-packed day but it was fantastic to share the amazing people and places of Balby.
Keep an eye out for more updates on our Well Communities as we continue to work with partners, especially residents, to strengthen the communities in Doncaster.