Through Together Fund, Sport England and the National Lottery is providing community organisations with extra support to help local people get active.
County Durham Sport supported Waddington Street Centre with their successful Together Fund application. This is their story.
Waddington Street Centre is a community based mental health resource centre. Through the Together Fund, they operated in partnership with Lanchester Road Hospital, an NHS acute mental health hospital, to deliver a cycling project. The new cycling group aimed to increase the opportunity for people to engage in activities post-Covid and improve the physical health and wellbeing of users/inpatients.
We asked Waddington Street Centre to reflect on how things have been going.
What’s been going well?
It’s been amazing to have a regular set of people that enjoy cycling! The project provides a great opportunity for people to cycle who may not have done any cycling previously. It also gets people out in the fresh air and sunshine, improving their mental wellbeing and fitness.
One participant said, “Really enjoyed it and was exciting to be out and about on the bikes in the fresh air. I enjoyed going through the woods.”
What’s been challenging?
Staffing the cycling with ride leader trained people each week has proved challenging.
Additionally, the location of the bikes has come with limitations relating to the areas participants can go cycling; there is a very easy or very challenging route, with nothing in between. Finally, the weather is sometimes unpredictable which means sessions have had to be cancelled.
What have you learned?
A key piece of learning is that they need to recruit capable volunteers to help manage the lack of capacity to deliver regular sessions.
What should happen next/in future?
The Centre already have started a recruitment drive to try and bridge this gap and they will continue to try to overcome the challenges in delivering the sessions in the future.
County Durham Sport are proud to be able to support organisations like Waddington Street Centre to make a difference to the lives of County Durham communities. Join us in celebrating the amazing impact of this Sport England/National Lottery funding by sharing your story on social media with the hashtag #TogetherFund.