More than 700 Thamesmead residents have benefited from Positive Steps Thamesmead - a pioneering volunteer-led wellbeing project managed by Trust Thamesmead.
Positive Steps Thamesmead began after the Lakeside Medical Practice in South Thamesmead noticed that around half their patients were visiting with non-medical needs - issues such as stress about debt and fuel poverty.
The partnership has trained 16 volunteers to inform about services available locally or to signpost patients from the practice to other experts, in a number of areas including debt, immigration, housing, health and wellbeing and employment and training.
Since its launch in April 2015 this support has benefited more than 700 residents, while at the same time reducing waiting times at the medical practice.
Ms B, who met with a Positive Steps Thamesmead advisor at Lakeside Health Centre, is one such resident who has benefited from the support.
It was there she explained that her husband's disability benefit had been suspended at short notice, leaving the family in financial difficulty. Through support from Positive Steps Thamesmead, Ms B was able to gain accurate information and advice about the benefits she and her husband were entitled to as well as support to fill in appeal forms about the decision to suspend his benefits
This resulted in the benefits being reinstated and backdated, easing the financial burden that the family had been experiencing.
Positive Steps Thamesmead is a partnership project between Peabody, Fair Finance, Bexley Citizens Advice Bureau, Thamesmead Food Bank, Recovery College Greenwich, Thamesmead Furniture Recycle, Lakeside Medical Practice, Job Centre Plus, London Borough of Bexley and others.
Originally funded by the Community Development Foundations (CDF) 2015/16 Our Place programme as part of the Department for Communities and Local Government, Positive Steps Thamesmead continues to be funded by the City of London Corporation's charity City Bridge Trust and Peabody.
Positive Steps Thamesmead is currently available from Lakeside Medical Practice in Southmere Village, off Yarnton Way, Thamesmead and also at outreach sessions including Waterways Childrens Centre and Emmanuel Food Bank.
Contact Community Development Officer, Linda Delieu, T: 020 3828 4933 or E: firstname.lastname@example.org