Holistic Opportunities Preventing Exclusion (HOPE)
HOPE is a 2-year NHS Charities Together funded project aimed at reducing isolation and loneliness in the community of Wolverhampton, which has been exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. It is a joint partnership programme between Royal Wolverhampton NHS trust, and Wolverhampton Voluntary and Community Action (WVCA).
Trained volunteers visit service users to provide companionship and support and an also link them up with social and therapeutic type activities and groups. Digital support and access to devices can also be provided to anyone needing that kind of support.
We work alongside Social Prescribing teams to do this, so the volunteers work with the Social Prescribing link workers to identify suitable beneficiaries for the support.
We work in partnership with WVCA who manage the Social Prescribing service, and also manage the Small grants element of the project, in which local community groups can apply for funding to develop activities aimed at reducing social isolation.
How can a potential service user (beneficiary) be referred into HOPE to receive support?
Firstly, ensure they are referred into Social Prescribing (SP). This can be done by a GP or other professional on behalf of young people who are aged 13-17 years old, and registered with a Wolverhampton GP. Once they are referred in, the SP teams will assess the referral and if appropriate begin the support. If it is identified that the referral can receive HOPE support, they will be linked up with the trained volunteers. For further information, please call Social Prescribing on 01902 328987 or email SPinfo@wvca.org.uk
How can community groups apply for HOPE funding to develop activities?
The HOPE project has established a small grants programme which will support activities that will help to reduce isolation and loneliness. This funding opportunity is for grass roots community groups and small organisations to organise and run social groups and activities that will bring people together.
This for example could be activities focused on particular interests, fitness sessions, mental health workshops or anything else that will bring people together. We anticipate the need for activities to focus on health and wellbeing, building resilience, budget management, and social/companionship.
To be eligible:
- You will be a voluntary organisation or community group with a turnover of less than £50K
- Your proposed project must be based in Wolverhampton and primarily support Wolverhampton residents
- Your project must focus on supporting the needs of people whose mental health has been affected by loneliness and isolation (perhaps as a result of Covid-19)
If you meet the eligibility criteria and wish to apply, please visit HOPE Small Grants Programme to download the application form and apply.
How Do I Become a HOPE Volunteer?
- We are always looking for volunteers to join us and would love to hear from you.
- The volunteer role description can be found below
If you are interested in applying, please contact the HOPE team on the details below.
HOPE Team Contact Details
Patient Information Centre
New Cross Hospital
Telephone: 01902 695333/07796 046072