Inactive people in and around three South Somerset communities are set to benefit from a successful lottery funding bid led by South Somerset District Council.
The ‘Click into Activity’ project is one of only 16 projects nationally to receive investment from Sport England’s Get Healthy, Get Active fund which aims to get inactive people moving.
The successful bid was the result of a partnership between Somerset Health and Wellbeing Board, University of the West of England in Bristol, Somerset Activity and Sports Partnership (SASP), South Somerset District Council and the CLICK GP Federation which covers the area of Chard, Ilminster and Crewkerne.
Charlie Coward, Healthy Lifestyles Officer at South Somerset District Council lead officer for the successful bid explains more about the project: “Click into Activity will give local GP surgeries the opportunity to offer healthy lifestyle support to inactive patients.
“The aim of this project is to address a lack of intensive healthy lifestyle interventions for people who are diagnosed as either diabetic, pre-diabetic or hypertensive. It will work by referring identified patients to exercise specialists who will then offer one-to-one support, signposting and a ‘buddy system’. These patients will be encouraged to participate in sports sessions which are specifically designed for inactive people with long term health conditions.”
Sport England Director of Community Sport, Mike Diaper, said: “Physical activity plays a powerful role in improving people’s health. The evidence is absolutely clear on this. But it also has a wider impact.
“We want to highlight the positive and valuable contribution that sport can make to people’s health and well-being but also the economy.
“These programmes will do exactly that. By putting prevention at the forefront of their work, they will help to reduce the risk of inactive people developing serious health problems and in doing so, save taxpayer’s money. That is the power of sport in action.”
Emeline Dean, GP partner and Chair of CLICK federation said, “As a group of GPs we are all supportive of the proposal for physical activity advisors to be based within the practices to try to improve health outcomes for Diabetic, Prediabetic and Hypertensive patients. This project has the potential for far reaching consequences throughout the whole population.”
Sports Minister Tracey Crouch said: “What’s great about these projects is the fact that they are giving people opportunities to get moving in ways that suit them.
“It’s so important people are active at every stage of their life, not just in terms of fitness, but it’s also key to maintaining a healthy body and mind, as well as ensuring good quality of life.”
Councillor Sylvia Seal, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture at South Somerset District Council said, “We are so pleased to have been a part of this successful bid. Working with a wide range of partners will enable us to help a large number of people in and around the three communities to make a positive contribution to their long term health.
Evidence shows that if adults are physically active, it helps to prevent or manage more than 20 chronic health conditions including heart disease, cancer and dementia. Inactivity also costs the economy £7.4billion a year and contributes to one in six deaths – the same proportion as smoking. 28% of people in England, approximately 12.5 million, are currently inactive.
Photo shows Health Walkers setting off from Summervale GP Surgery in Ilminster
To view all of our news releases, please visit www.southsomerset.gov.uk/latest-news
South Somerset District Council is also on social media: