Article provided to WhereIsTheCare by Chelmsford CVS.
Social prescribing is a way of linking people with sources of help and support within the community. It provides a non-medical referral option that can operate alongside existing treatments to improve health and well-being. People can be signposted to a large numbers of sources of help and support including:
· Volunteering opportunities
· Befriending and social activities
· Support and self-help groups
· Physical activities
· Managing money
· Community transport
To name but a few.
Many models of social prescribing nationally are focussed only of delivery in primary care and GP practices or even on a narrow spectrum of patients such as those with Long Term Conditions.
Connect Well is the social prescribing model that is being used across Mid Essex and operates in a much wider way than other models of social prescribing.
It is accessible to the whole population of Mid Essex residents (Braintree, Maldon and Chelmsford districts) and can be accessed through over 20 different organisations, not just in your GP Practice.
Over 200 Social Prescribing Champions have been trained, across these three localities, to help lead empowered signposting, using Connect Well and encouraging people to identify their own needs and relevant organisations that will be able to assist.
The Champions can send direct referrals to the providers on Connect Well and those providers will respond directly to individuals to discuss their needs and what can be offered to help.
The project is multi-agency developed and delivered and is seeking to continually improve how it helps the public get better connected to their local communities and voluntary sector organisations. We are also working to enable people to self-refer using Connect Well and this will be ready at by the end of 2016.
For more information or to find help and support please contact