We are expanding our Community Navigation service across Brighton & Hove

Posted on 30th August 2017 by

Chrissie CN

Our Community Navigation service is set to expand its reach to all GP surgeries across the city. The service allows GP’s and other staff in surgeries to refer isolated patients, who our service Coordinators work with to identify what support they need. Community Navigators are trained volunteers with previous experience of supporting people who then help the person to access essential local groups and services.

We established our Community Navigation service, or ‘social prescribing’, in August 2014 and it is funded and supported by the Brighton & Hove Clinical Commissioning Group. So far, the service has supported over 900 local people, around half of which are aged over 65, and many of whom experience social isolation or anxieties about their wellbeing in general.

It’s a proven method of helping isolated and vulnerable people improve their wellbeing and access the services and groups they want and need. An evaluation of the service pilot found that 98% of patients that were supported by the service felt listened to and understood. GPs and practice staff have also said that the service has been a success with 95% saying that the service is effective at providing a referral route to non-medical services.

Chrissie Valentine, one of our Community Navigators, has volunteered with the service for almost three years and has supported over 120 people. She helped one older couple Bob and Mavis. Chrissie said: “For me, this case, like many others, was humbling and rewarding in equal measure.”

If you’d like to join the dedicated team of volunteer Community Navigators, you can download our application pack from our website here, get in touch on 01273 229382, or email Seb Feast at seb.feast@bh-impetus.org

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