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Foundation support has been “Worth It’s Weight in Gold”

6th October 2021

We don’t believe that one person can claim not to have been affected in some way by the nature of what has happened over the last eighteen months, and so many of us have felt isolated and lonely”, said Paula Stainton, Foundation Manager for the charity, York City Football Club Foundation.

It was in direct response to how the Pandemic has affected people’s physical health and wellbeing, and isolation levels over the last year, that the Foundation in conjunction with not-for-profit healthcare provider, Benenden Health, created a project to address this in York  

The Office of National Statistics suggests loneliness levels fluctuated during the pandemic showing 1 in 4 adults were experiencing this. Once the clocks went back and the nights were drawing in the week before November 1st, those feeling lonely always or often reached 8% representing 4.2 million people. YCFC Foundation looked to reduce these feelings and increase activity levels locally, by working with their partners in the medical profession to “prescribe their support” to people.

The Foundation team were able to offer various levels of support depending on the relevant restrictions, with access to physical activity sessions including Walking Football and Get Your Kit On recreational and social football activities, as well as our social community groups, and individual doorstep visits and walk and talks.

“Our prescribers have described this project as “worth it’s weight in gold” and we can clearly see the benefits and impact that it has had on the individuals both in terms of physical, social and mental wellbeing. The regularity of our interaction created routine and purpose for some who otherwise had very little or nothing, and for others it became the confidence they needed to do more”, continued Paula.

The project initially launched from September 2020, provided support of varying levels to 52 individuals for up to 10 months, when it was needed at critical times and to a point where the individuals have been able to start to transition back into community activities with the Foundation or other local groups. Thanks to the ongoing project sponsorship with Benenden Health, Foundation personnel will continue to support 8 individuals who continue to feel confined to their house and may be finding it harder to transition to the “new normal” until the end of 2021.

“The pandemic and various lockdowns have affected everyone, with social isolation becoming a real issue for many. We were delighted to support YCFC Foundation’s project and are really pleased to see how it has benefitted those in our community who have most needed help throughout the pandemic. We look forward to learning more about the successes as the project continues throughout 2021. Our thanks go to York City FC Foundation for their tireless hard work in making this project a success and making a difference in our community,” Trina Higgins, Engagement & Wellbeing Coordinator, Benenden Health.

For further information on projects and activities that York City FC Foundation are running please contact them on inclusion@yorkcityfcfoundation.co.uk.

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