The Find Your Active Community Connectors are here to help offer support to Essex residents who may be new to physical activity and not know where to start, feel anxious or worried about attending a class, or have an injury/long-term health condition and are unsure of what exercise they can safely do. Our wonderful community connectors are the individuals that can give you a guiding hand and find an activity that’s right for you!
Tracy Bliss, supporting residents in Castle Point and Basildon, has shared what she gets up to in a day in the life of a Find Your Active Community Connector.
“First I woke up, let my dogs out into the garden and gave them their breakfast. I then responded to emails, Facebook messages and posted on Facebook to increase my activity.
Next, preparations for a visit to Basildon Mind Community Allotment in Vange, but on my way I got side-tracked into Tesco, Pitsea where I spoke to the Manager and discussed the potential of a Find Your Active Pop-up in their store. I explained about the Find Your Active campaign and its aim to help people get independently active in Castle Point and Basildon. The Manager supported the idea and promised to give my info to the store’s Community Champion.
I then continued onto Basildon Mind Community Allotment. Wow, what a pleasant surprise. There was a lovely space provided by the Council, with sheds for hot drinks. I was shown around the allotment before we all chatted around a cuppa and biscuits. I wrote plenty of notes as we are hoping to have an allotment in Castle Point, so lots of useful knowledge was shared!
I had a few personal tasks on the agenda next. Filled up with petrol and made an appointment for my dog at Vets4Pets. Whilst I was there the receptionists nearly didn’t recognise me in my ‘work uniform’. So, I saw an opportunity to give them my business card and to let them know I can help them find activity they enjoy, if they wish.
When I get home, I fuss my dogs, make lunch, check emails, and post my morning’s activities showing what I have discovered. I had a voicemail to rearrange a visit to Laindon Health Centre pop up, and spoke with a lady who had joined the ‘My Weight Matters’ free weight loss course, so we discussed how Active Essex support this initiative, and that we’re here to help activity alongside the weight loss plan.
I respond to emails, post my eventful morning details on Facebook and discuss with the Castle Point Climate Action Group about the need for a Castle Point allotment. The plan is that they will lead this work, whilst I will help to secure the plot and review the requirements. I agree to attend a local walk with someone in Castle Point in the future, whilst preparing for a drop-in session at Laindon Health Centre tomorrow.
I was about to go out when I got the bug for the allotment. I delayed going out and called the Head of Environment for Castle Point and Trudie and we have a way forward. Another win for the day!
Finally I went for a walk with my kids and dogs, and came back to a hot chocolate as it’s cold and dreary out. I continued on my laptop which includes receiving a positive email about hall hire for a potential seated class, in an area where there is no activity currently, and review a list of local walks in Basildon I have been tagged in to on Facebook.”
We think the Community Connectors in our local communities in Essex are great, and it’s amazing to see how they’re supporting so many different people to find the activity that’s right for them.
If you’d like to find out more, or get in touch with your local community connector, click here.