When Bill could no longer attend a local art programme that had become a lifeline after he experienced poor physical and mental health, MacIntyre Great Communities worked alongside Bill and members of the community to help him to stay connected.
After suffering from physical and mental health concerns, which resulted in the loss of long term employment, Bill enrolled in a local art programme called Blooming Art, to help improve his wellbeing and social skills.
But when Bill could no longer attend Blooming Art as a result of lockdown measures, Dawn, the founder of the programme, reached out to 'MacIntyre Great Communities' in Warrington to see if the team could support Bill during this unsettling period.
Aware that MacIntyre Great Communities in Warrington had set up a food bank, delivering food parcels to support people who may be isolated, Dawn thought the opportunity was perfect for Bill.
"I knew that Bill was already using local community foodbanks and this was taken away, alongside the consistency and routine of coming to classes, where he has developed his outstanding creative skills every week to learn and meet the friends and social network he’s grown."
Dawn connected the Great Communities team with Bill, to discuss how they could help during the lockdown period. It became clear that Bill was worried about stockpiling in the supermarkets and how he would cope financially.
Immediately, the team agreed to support Bill using the foodbank. He was familiar with Great Communities and began connecting through a weekly well-being phone call with Peter Connor, Great Communities Manager in Warrington. Bill also began to enjoy his weekly food deliveries from Peter, which involved a chat from a safe distance.
Speaking about the experience, Bill said:
"I’m really grateful for all of the help and support from Great Communities, through the foodbank. To be honest, it’s been a godsend. The food has been a real boost as money is so tight at the minute."
"I also really enjoy having a chat on my doorstep with Pete on Thursday. It’s nice to see a friendly face who I can talk to about my week and what’s going on in the world."
"The food is always good quality and each week every package there’s something new to use and I get to create different meals at home as I enjoy cooking and I’m confident in the kitchen."
Dawn has also continued to support Bill and has regular conversations with him and is planning different ways to continue his creative development and learning at home with the support of MacIntyre Great Communities.
Now Bill feels positive about the future and is excited about the prospect of returning to his studies with Blooming Art, at the end of the current pandemic.
After further discussions with both Dawn and Bill, MacIntyre Great Communities will be delivering art materials to Bill, to help him continue his artwork and creative portfolio at home.
Through the working collaboration, our MacIntyre Great Communities team are keen to help the learning and creative work to continue in the community.
If you know someone who would benefit from the support of our MacIntyre Great Communities teams in Warrington or Worcestershire, please get in touch.