In this blog post we look out how Jubilee Park is supporting their local community to continue to keep active following completion of the exercise on prescription programme.
Following Covid-19, Lincolnshire saw an increase in GP Referrals to the One You Lincolnshire’s scheme for ‘exercise on prescription’. This scheme was developed to encourage people to be more active and support their health and wellbeing through 12-week programmes offered throughout the county. However, one barrier was soon apparent that after people had completed the free programme, there was a low continuation rate. The main barrier being that people had to then pay for their fitness classes and activities to continue to enjoy the benefits that being active brings.
One organisation was keen to assist with this and support their local community to breakdown that barrier. With money and support from the Together Fund, distributed through Active Lincolnshire, Jubilee Park set out to provide subsidised fitness sessions to 50 residents with long-term health conditions through a 12-week project from March 2023, and to encourage participation to continue with a subsidised membership fee.
Thanks to the Sport England funding, Jubilee Park expanded their fitness class timetable, invested in more equipment and helped to fund a new instructor to Level 2 Fitness Advisor. This all ensured that they could continue to deliver a high standard of physical activity for the local community during and after the project.
Jubilee Park used their outdoor space and local bowls club, but classes were also offered indoors in the evening and during bad weather, encouraging everyone to take part, especially in those colder winter months. Social media campaigns and in-house marketing encouraged everyone to join in from varied abilities and restricted incomes.
The team soon exceeded their original target of 50 residents and have now welcomed over 200 people attending sessions with them at Jubilee Park. On average, they have seen activity increased to twice per week for each participant, and they are continuing to see a real appetite for more classes and sessions with new ideas coming in regularly.
‘’It is great to see Woodhall Spa residents really engage with the exercise programme. We are extremely grateful for the funding we received from Sport England with the additional help from Active Lincolnshire.
Jubilee Park is a charity, with no help from the government, so we are always looking out for additional support to support ways to bring the community together and create a hub which is supporting their mental and physical wellbeing.
This money enabled us to help 200 people access exercise classes, have specialised equipment during the classes and provided us an indoor space during the colder winter months. Without this funding it would have been very difficult to find a way to fund this.’’Rachael Meller, Jubilee Park Manager
Participants actively encouraged each other throughout the project, and most have remained active at a higher rate than before they started. Some of them told us how they have felt getting involved with Jubilee Park and the program:
‘‘Supportive, motivating, fun and inclusive. This opportunity has allowed me to feel part of the local community meeting new people in a friendly and safe environment.’’
‘’I have increased my activity, and this has had a positive effect on my mental and physical health.’’
The project continues to support local residents and Jubilee Park have seen at least 80% of participants continue with their new active lifestyle. They are aiming to have their own indoor venue in the future to further expand their exercise class timetable, offering more varied classes for people to get involved with. Membership sales mean that the classes are self-funded which enables Jubilee Park to continue offering them all year round, and if people want to attend one off sessions, they can opt to ‘pay-as-you-go.’
Jubilee Park continues to offer a wide variety of fitness classes for all to get involved in, from Circuit Training, Boxercise, Chair based exercise to a Power Walk.
All are welcome and you can find out more about how to get involved on Jubilee Park’s Website
Find out more about One You Lincolnshire ‘Exercise on Prescription’ scheme here.