Pool Together: Continues to make a difference

The Pool Together programme aims to tackle loneliness and social isolation in and around Blackpool.

Utilising funding from People’s Postcode Lottery, Blackpool Football Club Community Trust are able to work with partner agencies such as GPs, Pharmacies and local charity agencies to triage isolated people and work with them to improve their self esteem and confidence to move themselves forward and attend some of our Community Provision.

Since September we have employed a Community Navigation Manager to oversee the programme and to be a single point of contact for agencies and self referrals.

How does it work?

The team receive the referrals and then contacts each individual by telephone in the first instance. They then work with the individual to make a decision about moving forward, either directly on to a programme or to take part in a garden gate visit or a telephone triage service.

Rachel has contacted more than 20 people since starting in September and more referrals are coming in every day. She has supported Armed Forces Veterans to take part in the NAAFI coffee morning and engage with other Veterans whilst enjoying a brew and a bacon butty.

She has worked with a gentleman who was suffering from depression and helped him to engage in our Sporting Memories provision. Referrals have also included a number of people enrolling on the Weight Management programme, taking the first steps into improving their lifestyle and understanding what it means to make healthy choices.

Rachel said

I have really enjoyed working with partners in and around Blackpool and everyone has been very welcoming. There are an unbelievable amount of quality services designed to help people that I had never heard of before this role. By far the most rewarding thing is to engage with someone over the phone and then to see them laughing with new friends in their first session. It is hard to let go sometimes but incredible when they don’t need my help anymore.”

In the new year Rachel hopes to see more referrals coming in from the partnership work that she has been busy working on over the last couple of months.

The Community Navigation work and Community Engagement has been particularly relevant this month as it is Men’s Mental Health Month. It is great to hear from people who are acknowledging that they are struggling with their mental wellbeing and appreciate that they would like some extra support.

The list of top tips to improve mental health includes talking and exercising, both of which can be utilised from the Community Provision offer at with us at Blackpool FC Community Trust.

We would love to welcome you, so if you would like any more information regarding any of the programmes that we offer or would like to refer in to our service then please email info@bfcct.co.uk or contact Rachel on 07597 786098.