Monday, 20 May 2013
A GREEN scheme set up to help mental health patients is thriving.
The Growing 2gether initiative, at Hayden Road allotments, St Paul's, helps people to be active in a natural environment.
The project is run by 2gether NHS Foundation Trust and enjoyed by their users and those from other agencies.
Alicia Talbot, an exercise and health practitioner with the trust, co-ordinates the sessions, with support from 2gether staff and community health trainers
She said the people who take part and dig in – most of whom have a severe and enduring mental illness – are benefiting hugely from the exercise, fresh air, sense of satisfaction and social opportunities.
"Green exercise has proven mental and physical health benefits, and has emerged as a simple, low-cost, therapeutic activity, for individuals experiencing mental health problems," she said.
"Through the allotment, our clients can work together to plan, prepare and grow produce, take the produce home to cook healthy meals and also learn life skills.
"It's also about getting out and meeting other people, providing routine and structure, improving communication skills and gaining a sense of achievement from what they are doing.
"Gardening is something that appeals to many people, and our sessions are regularly attended, even in the depths of winter."
2gether transformed the original unloved overgrown site into a viable growing area, with a shed, path and seating area, compost bins, tools, a bench, water butt and fencing.
The plot was funded by Cheltenham Partnership's NHS Reducing Health Inequalities Olympic Legacy fund and supported by Cheltenham Borough Council's Healthy Lifestyles and environment charity Vision 21
Read more: http://www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk/Green-scheme-breath-fresh-air-mental-health/story-19013247-detail/story.html#ixzz2Tp0cYH5v
Thursday, 16 May 2013
Taking care of you
am a carer for my husband who was injured whilst in the army. I also run a
company Vanilla Moon which specialises in holistic relaxation complementary and
beauty treatments from which I offer free treatments for service personal who
have been injured and their carers, by a company I started called
I know how hard it can be being a carer and often not a role that was a life
choice rather than one that we are often thrown into, I have shared some
thoughts using my professional back ground knowledge about taking care of
yourself when you are a carer.
Caring for yourself is often the first thing put on the back
burner when you are caring for someone else. Whether you are a busy mum, or
caring for an elderly or ill relative, don’t forget to take some time out for
yourself to care for you!
We know that busy carers won’t be able to take the time out
to spend days away at a spa resort, but we’ve got lots of ideas to keep you
feeling like you with a tiny bit of pamper time with Vanilla Moon.
Rushing around combined with the stresses of work and worry
can mean that you leave yourself running on empty, grabbing take away food and
using caffeine as a means to boost your concentration and stave off tiredness.
Make sure you get your five a day; swap morning toast or skipping breakfast for
wholegrain cereal with two pieces of fresh fruit with some fresh juice. Try to
keep caffeinated drinks to before 3pm, drinking tea or coffee later than this
may affect your sleep. Swap for decaff or fruit and herbal teas. Camomile is
great for helping relaxation in the evenings and is naturally caffeine free.
Get yourself a
Wherever possible, try to plan out your day, getting up and
getting to bed at the same time. This improves your ability to wake and also
programmes your body to sleep at bed time. Making a list of tasks for the next
day and keeping a diary can help you to stay organised with minimum fuss,
freeing up more time for yourself.
Take a time out!
Set aside at least two hours of your week for yourself.
Arrange for a friend or relative to have your children or keep an eye on your
relative for a couple of hours. With another friend, you can easily arrange to
swap responsibilities for a couple of hours so you can both get some ‘you’
time. Book a massage or manicure, visit the gym or just go for a walk, paint
your nails or take a long relaxing bath with a book. Use this time wisely to
de-stress, boost your self-esteem and feel good inside and out. Make this time
non-negotiable, switch off your mobile and the TV and concentrate on you.
A problem shared…
Is a problem halved, so the saying goes. Invite friends for a
cup of tea and share your burdens. Get in touch with carers groups in your
area; talking to people in the same situation as you will unlock tons of useful
tips and information and will give you and your family a great boost of
support. Even when you are tired and feel worn out, remember that a few kind
words can make all the difference, so share them around with your friends and
family and look for the positives in your life instead of dwelling on any
This article is written by Vanilla Moon and is
for guidance only, and not meant to replace medical advice you may have been
given, if you are feeling continually worn out or have a continued low mood or
are worried about any aspect of your wellbeing and health please speak to your
Wednesday, 15 May 2013
Telecare service calls for more people to test out GPS devices as part of
The county’s Telecare service is calling for more people to test out GPS (Global Positioning System) devices as part of a six-month trial aimed at improving support in the community for people with memory loss or learning disabilities.
Holly Newman, Telecare team manager for Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust which manages the service, said: “We’re working in partnership with Gloucestershire County Council to trial GPS for people who are still able to go out in their local community, but who may have difficulty finding their way home, or who are vulnerable when in certain areas.”
She added: “So far, we have ten people trying out the device, but we’re looking for another thirty people who are willing to be involved in a six-month trial.”
Betty and Leslie Smith from Staverton near Cheltenham have experienced first-hand the benefits of the GPS device.
Mrs Smith explained: “My husband Leslie has memory loss and occasionally he goes missing. At times, this has caused him great distress. We live in a rural area, and I am not able to drive so we rely on my daughter-in-law for help when this happens.”
“Having the device is a big relief – if my husband goes missing, I know we can find him really easily. I can call my daughter-in-law, who is able to see where Leslie is on her mobile phone and locate him immediately. It is less stressful for my daughter-in-law too as, instead of driving around looking for my husband, or having to report him as missing to the police, she can now go straight to where he is and bring him home.”
The devices being tested by the Telecare service in Gloucestershire are small and discreet as Holly Newman explained: “We are currently trialling two different devices – one that can be attached to a key ring or similar, and one that is the size of a small mobile phone to carry in a pocket or bag. GPS devices are not suitable for everyone, so we will make a careful assessment of a person’s needs before recommending they join our trial.”
The device will be available to the wearer free of charge and the Telecare team will be in regular contact with them and their family or carer to complete the evaluation during the trial period. Those taking part in the trial will need to have a family member or a friend who is willing to access their location as needed, via a website, monitoring centre or on a smart phone.
To find out more about the GPS trial on behalf of a friend or family member, please contact Gloucestershire County Council’s Adult Helpdesk: 01452 426868
Full story: http://www.glos-care.nhs.uk/news/135-county-s-telecare-service-calls-for-more-people-to-test-out-gps-devices-as-part-of-six-month-trial
Real caring in Gloucestershire is important
Friday, 10 May 2013
Importance of care for Gloucestershire’s 4,000 dementia
Remembering to eat or how to brush your teeth are some of
the more important things in life that dementia sufferers can forget.
There are 4,000 dementia sufferers in Gloucestershire,
needing social care at home.
Roy Bell, 92, and his wife, Peggy, of Bishop’s Cleeve, both
have mixed dementia to varying degrees. The couple, who live in Bishop’s
Cleeve, have each other – but rely on support from a vast network of family and
care workers to keep them healthy.
Carers Gloucestershire, Village Agents, Memory Managers,
GPs, occupational therapists and dental hygienists form a team of social care
for dementia patients.
Peggy and Roy have pull cords in their sheltered accommodation
and are checked up on by a warden daily.
“I get upset because I can’t do the things I once could,”
said Peggy, who used to run the Shakespeare Inn in Cheltenham with Roy in the
“I never want to lose my independence.”
Read more: http://www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk/