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September 14, 2022

The cheering effect of a little sunshine

Profile image for Jessica Duffy

Good Practice Mentor

Sunshine In Leeds, a Time to Shine project run by Health for All, set out to provide a very practical service. It worked with people to help them get out of their homes, recognising that some people would be unable to do this but would still be able to benefit from support.

Read the Sunshine in Leeds end of project report.

Sunshine in Leeds staff worked with people in the security of their own homes from the start. Those who felt very lonely and isolated really appreciated the befriending service and staff were then able to identify people who wanted to go out, and helped them to do so safely, with advice and support from the project’s occupational therapist.

For those older people who wished to go out but chose not to be part of a larger group staff offered one-to-one support and a friendly buddy service to take them to local parks for a stroll and a coffee.

Sunshine in Leeds started to arrange a number of different social events to offer people the chance to get out and meet some new people. They tried various activities, but the thing that really took off came to be known as coffee meetings. The format varied a little; sometimes they had meetings at the White Rose Centre (a large shopping mall on the outskirts of Leeds). People could do a little shopping together and meet up for a coffee. The second popular venue was the large lakeside cafe at Roundhay Park. People really enjoyed meeting there and started to make friends, sometimes having a short stroll after their coffee.

To find out more about what made Sunshine in Leeds so bright you can read the end of project report.

Jessica Duffy
Good Practice Mentor