Health and wellbeing

Funding level: Up to £1,000

Description

Luv2meetU enables people with learning disabilities to make friends and to develop relationships. It operates in five areas across west Yorkshire and has over 300 members. It supports its members to attend a wide range of social and leisure activities and receives consistently positive feedback. The only problem is that its members just want more of it!

Many people with learning disabilities can be very isolated and lonely as it is much harder for them to get out to meet new people or to see friends. They nearly always have to rely on others to help them. Research has shown that lacking a network of friends can ‘vastly elevate’ the risk of developing health conditions and can affect physical well-being. There is also evidence that people with learning disabilities take less exercise than the general population and that they can find it hard to understand the consequences of their lifestyle on their health. Therefore it is not surprising that many people are in danger of becoming overweight and suffer from conditions that are associated with being overweight.

This new ‘Luv2getactive’ project will introduce a new monthly exercise session for members from across all five areas in West Yorkshire. This will enable them to meet new people at the same time as enjoying a fun activity and getting fit. Each month the activity will take place in a different area so that everyone has the chance to join in.

The members will chose the activity and we have already been asked by them about accessible bike riding, swimming and walking groups. The groups will be supported by staff and Luv2meetU volunteers.

£937 would fund a member of staff to run one sporting activity a month for members and also cover the expenses for volunteer support.

Luv2meetU is a Community Interest Company which is run by members for members. It relies on fundraised money to run activities for its members. Being a member builds self-esteem and having friends improves a sense of self-worth. Members’ confidence grows and they become more independent and ready to try new things in their lives; they become more active generally. Being a member of Luv2MeetU can be summed up by one member – “I love Luv2MeetU! It’s so much better than sitting alone all night like I did before.”

Luv2meetU

Luv2meetU genuinely represents people with learning disabilities and it is very successful. 87% of members have made friends and 94% feel more confident as a result. Luv2getactive will introduce a new and important aspect to help people get fit at the same time as having fun and making new friends.

Location: West Yorkshire, United Kingdom