The Wellbeing Exeter pilot project facilitates a social prescribing model that empowers individuals to have more control over their health, wellbeing and social welfare by connecting them to non-medical community networks and sources of support.
The Wellbeing Exeter Partnership recognises that people (not patients) want a better life, not service. The purpose of the partnership is to help people on a journey from service dependence (through a safe and supported period of transition), into increased involvement with their local community which enables them to enjoy a richer and more fulfilling life.
The programme’s three-pronged approach works like this:
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- Exeter GP practices refer patients they believe would benefit from increased social activity to their trusted Community Connector.
- The Connector works with the individual to identify what matters to them, and plan a way forward. Together, they start to engage with the local community. The Connector might introduce people to activities and organisations within their neighbourhoods, and may accompany them initially.
On average individuals work for around 6 weeks with their Connectors but this varies depending on individual needs and wishes. This process is known as Social Prescribing.
- Simultaneously, Community Builders are working within communities, identifying social resources, stimulating activity, and helping those communities to thrive and develop. This builds communities’ capacity to offer opportunities to residents for connection and interdependence.
Community Builders are a great resource for Community Connectors to help discover what might be on offer for participating individuals.