Community Wellbeing Champions

About the Community Wellbeing Champions
The Community Wellbeing Champions programme is setting up a network of organisations and volunteers that will help to form a closer link between services and communities so that health information, guidance, and support reaches those that need it most.

The Community Wellbeing Champions Network will help ensure that providers of health and wellbeing services are aware of the views and needs of our diverse communities and will work closely with organisations and individuals across the city to help identify and overcome barriers that can result in some communities experiencing poorer health and wellbeing than others.

Why are Community Wellbeing Champions needed?
Community Wellbeing Champions are needed because we know that many of the people that suffer the most from poor physical and mental health and wellbeing are the same people that are still not being reached and heard by the advice and services that could help them.

There are also differences in the rates at which people in the city experience various conditions. This is both compared to the rest of the country, and when comparing different areas and community groups within Leicester.

For example, Leicester has rates above the national average for diabetes, obesity, alcohol-related hospital admissions, and poor oral health. In addition, 1 in 4 adults also report struggling with a mental health condition.

The people of Leicester also have been greatly affected by the Coronavirus pandemic with some of our communities being amongst those hardest-hit by Covid-19.
The Community Wellbeing Champions will be drawn from communities and work alongside them to support recovery from and resilience to Covid-19 and address issues that contribute to wider health inequalities.

What will the Community Wellbeing Champions do?
The Community Wellbeing Champions will work closely with the Public Health team at Leicester City Council.

They will have the opportunity to engage in a range of activities, which could include:
• Health promotion events
• Community research on barriers and health needs
• Sharing knowledge and experience with local communities
• Signposting people to support and reducing social isolation
• Co-designing and shaping services.

What support will Community Wellbeing Champions receive?
All Community Wellbeing Champions will be part of a network and receive ongoing support, training, information, and resources to help them carry out their role. They will be able to share ideas and experiences with each other as part of the network, and be able help shape the project as it develops to keep meeting the ever-changing needs of our communities.
The Champions will be supported in their work by a Community Facilitator who will provide them with up-to-date key messages around health and wellbeing and Covid-19 and help them to undertake engagement activities with their community.

Who can become a Community Wellbeing Champion?
Any voluntary, community, and social enterprise sector organisations that are already championing health and wellbeing issues/needs in their community are welcome to become members of the Community Wellbeing Champions Network.

In addition, if you help to run a sports club or social group, frequent a place of worship or other community venue, run a business that gives you contact with customers, or just have a circle of friends locally or on social media, you could also be a Community Wellbeing Champion.

And if you aren’t linked up with others, you can still be a valuable part of the network as a volunteer. You could share a skill like a second language that will help us to reach an underserved community group, or you could share insight from your health story to help improve understanding of how others like you experience services and care.

For more information about the scheme, or to register your interest in joining the network, please contact the Community Wellbeing Champions Team on wellbeingchampions@leicester.gov.uk .