Girlington Community Centre has launched free online health and wellbeing activities to help promote mental and physical wellbeing during the coronavirus pandemic.

The classes which begun today will take place over four weeks on Wednesdays and Thursday over popular video conferencing app Zoom and facebook live.

Participants can enjoy Yoga sessions every Wednesday morning from 11am – 12pm followed by a Women’s Circle in the afternoon from 5-6pm. The classes are aimed to help to connect, offer relaxation and provide mental health support during these isolating periods.

Thursdays classes – Be Well, which starts at 11am on Facebook Live and lasts 20 minutes – is designed to help people find a healthy life balance and offers wellbeing tips – and Gentle Movement and Relaxation which starts at 5pm on Zoom, is a ‘slow paced’ restorative session to help calm and relax.

The community focused centre has stepped up, by transforming most of their operations to online and telephone based work, continuing to serve the centre users and the reach out to the most vulnerable during this difficult time.

Since the first day of lockdwon a small team of volunteers have been attending and working in the centre, to transform the centre’s kitchen facilities into a community kitchen, which is now serving a hot meal daily to over 50 older and at risk people in the community.

Alongside this vital service of providing a hot meal and a food parcel, the centre has social prescribers and befriends, who are running their services via phone and video calling to support individuals with support, guidance and signposting.

Rubina Burhan, the Centre Manager, raises the important issue of supporting people’s physical and mental wellbeing as part and parcel of a longterm strategy in helping to tackle inequalities and ill health in the wider community.  She said, “Maintaining your wellbeing is vital, especially if people are at risk or isolated.  Many of the users of the services at the centre are reliant of easy access to support, social engagement and a range of physical and mental wellbeing activities.  We want to ensure that the community has our support whether it is in the form of physical or mental wellbeing or in the shape of accessing benefits, employment, immigration or debt advice, or that hey need a hot meal to ensure that they can get through this challenging time.”

Members of the public who want to join the wellbeing classes can access more information from the facebook page or by emailing j.nevin@girlington.org.uk who will then provide you with access to a zoom link where you can join the classes.