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Holistic health focused on YOU

 Holistic health focused on YOU

Holistic health focused on YOU

21 March 2019

Several participants of the YOU project, Port Augusta Corps, proudly show off their certificates of completion at the end of their five-week course.

By Simone Worthing

Physical, mental and spiritual health is the focus of the new YOU project recently launched at the Port Augusta Corps, South Australia.

The project, based on a successful pilot project that ran last October, now runs in line with each school term.

YOU is based on the corps’ mission to “create faith pathways and promote a healthy lifestyle to the people who attend our community centre,” said Tenille French, Community Program Coordinator, who, together with then Corps Officer Captain Elizabeth Johnson and Doorways Case Manager Sarah Woods, developed the project.

“We had run previous faith-based activities but had struggled to maintain client engagement, so we felt we needed to reinvent and rebrand this concept to its full potential.”

The toolbox of resources to help participants through the tough times.

The YOU project runs over five weeks, with each session focusing on a specific part of the body – such as the head, feet and hands – and incorporating discussion and activities that clients can then use to improve their physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing.

“We want to help group participants to be able to draw on the ‘toolbox’ of skills they develop through YOU at any time when they might be unwell or in crisis,” said Tenille.

As well as building the participant’s ‘psychological’ toolbox, small prompt cards are developed for each activity that is completed, and during the final session of the project, participants receive an actual toolbox of resources, made up of prompt cards and some other reminders and keepsakes from the program.

“They are able to take this box home with them and can use this as an aid to look at, touch and read in the times they feel the need to,” said Tenille.

Facilitators with different skill sets and perspectives are part of YOU, which helps to ensure that there is always someone available who can relate well to the uniqueness of each participant – many of whom are community members of different ages and backgrounds struggling with a range of issues.

Social isolation is common among the participants, with many making friends during their time at YOU and other community services programs.

“I love the interaction with the group,” said one participant. “I thought all contributed in different ways, which is life.”

Another participant said that she “really enjoyed our exercises and the company”.

Tenille said the participants have shared that they feel welcomed, accepted and comfortable while attending the group. “They also felt that they were able to take a piece from each session home, with such a wide range of techniques and activities covered across the whole project.

“We plan to further build and develop the program to continue to support health and wellbeing in the lives of those who attend.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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