Twelve 'community connectors' signed up in Sidmouth
PUBLISHED: 07:00 28 January 2020
An initiative to provide low-key, informal mental health support 'built into people's everyday lives' is gaining momentum in Sidmouth, and across East Devon.
The iBelong scheme revolves around people whose day-to-day activities already bring them into contact with those who might need help.
A recruitment event took place in Kennaway House on Thursday, January 23, and 12 people signed up.
They included members of the food bank, rugby club, churches, a carer support group, and bereavement counselling.
These people will now attend workshops to help them develop the skills and confidence to offer support when they see it is needed.
Similar initiatives will be rolled out in Honiton, Axminster, Ottery St Mary and Seaton.
The Sidmouth session was led by Di Fuller of Sid Valley HELP, one of the key organisations involved, and Kevin Feaviour from Imagine If, a company helping organisations create the conditions needed for mental well-being.
The iBelong model has been used in several companies and other establishments, but it is not thought to have been practiced across five towns before.