How social prescribing can help you improve your health and wellbeing
What is social prescribing
Social prescribing – sometimes called community referral – helps you find ways to improve your health and wellbeing. It does this by connecting you to events in your local area. This could be anything from art classes and social activities for adults who are isolated, to getting benefits and legal advice. Social prescribing allows you to access activities that meet your wider emotional, physical and social needs.
Services and activities available through social prescribing
Social prescribing can connect you to:
- healthy and active lifestyle advice
- arts, music and creativity
- befriending, counselling and other support groups
- housing benefits and financial support and advice
- employment, training and volunteering opportunities
- education and learning
- specialist services and support
- gardening projects
- healthy cookery classes.
How we can support you
Your GP, nurse or other health professional can refer you to a link worker or navigator. They will speak to you on the phone or meet face to face to:
- discuss your problems
- find out what’s important for your wellbeing
- help you access support, activities or services and make the best use of them.
Social prescribing link workers are based in GP Practices across Lewisham to help residents find community opportunities and services to improve your well-being. Support is free for up to six weeks.
Examples of support include:
- making appointments for housing, benefits and financial advice
- healthy lifestyle advice and physical activity
- joining and attending social activities and clubs
- getting online and accessing digital support
- befriending, counselling, bereavement and peer support referrals
- finding employment, training and volunteering opportunities
- completing Blue Badge/Taxicard/Dial-a-Ride applications
- emotional support
Who offers social prescribing services
Community Connections Lewisham is a social prescribing service run by Age UK for anyone 18+ in the borough. They support people’s health and well being through helping them discover and access local groups and services; for example, social groups, befriending services and adult education courses. The service they offer includes person-centred planning support for people with complex needs and barriers, and they are able to refer to a wide range of partner organisations when appropriate.
Community directory to support health and well being
Explore our community directory for local information, activity and support to improve your health and well being.
Sydenham Garden is for people wanting to improve their mental health, particularly people with depression, anxiety and trauma. They also have a specific service for people with the early stages of dementia. You'll need to be referred by a health or care professional.
Other social prescribing activities available
You can also find support for: