Wellbeing Hub Opens On Newcastle’s Central Promenade

The Wellbeing Hub in Newcastle opened on Monday 11th October.

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 The Wellbeing Hub in Newcastle opened on Monday 11th October.

Monday saw the beginning of a new service in Newcastle. The County Down Rural Community Network (CDRCN) celebrated the opening of their new Wellbeing Hub with the Chair of Newry Mourne & Down District Council, Cllr Cathy Mason, cutting the ribbon.

The hub will be a central point in Newcastle making it easier for people to access information, advice and support and participate in activities to improve their mental and physical health and wellbeing.

Cllr Cathy Mason, chairperson of Newry Mourne and Down District Council, cuts the ribbon assisted by County Down RCN chairman Alan Dumigan to open the Wellbeing Centre in Newcastle. (Photos courtesy Paddy Killen.)

The network has been working with local GPs and primary care teams and the wider community for over twenty years. In the last 3 years, they have linked up with the new Multi-disciplinary Teams (MDT) in the local primary care practices.

The network has a team of social prescribers and an MDT coordinator who take referrals from the GP practices, pharmacists and from other sources and they find solutions for people who may be affected by physical limitations or mental health issues or simply feel isolated in their own homes. This work has intensified during the COVID pandemic.

Cllr Cathy Mason, Chair of Council said: “This new Hub will be a great asset for the team at County Down Network. The ladies who formerly operated a ‘Connect & Chat’ service from this centre have laid the groundwork.

“Groups of all sorts now have a base to operate from in a beautiful and peaceful location. This will be an asset to the wider community in Newcastle as a place to meet up with friends or start a walk on the promenade and call back for a cuppa”.

Nicholas McCrickard, the manager of CDRCN was delighted with the opening. He said: “The weather was kind to us and this Hub is now well positioned to welcome local people who are recovering from the pandemic and just want to get out and about again”.

233 people have been referred by the local GPs and their teams to CDRCN since January this year in addition to the 377 clients that the Social Prescribing team have been working with since 2018.

Members of the County Down RCN, the Wellbeing Centre, Newry Mourne and Down District Council and GPs from the Causeway Practice pictured at the opening of the Wellbeing Centre at 85 Central Promenade, Newcastle.

Dr Lloyd Gilpin from the Causeway Practice remarked after the opening ceremony that “the Wellbeing Hub is designed to be a welcoming place where someone concerned about their wellbeing can come along, unpick their needs and be supported to get to the right services quickly through the Social Prescribing Model. We hope it will match the huge unmet need in the community with local community based solutions”.

The CDRCN will also deliver new services funded by the Mental Health Fund (just recently secured from the Department of Health and the CFNI). These services will help build connected and inclusive communities where individuals and groups will be supported to build good mental health and wellbeing.

The New CDRCN Hub will work with individuals, community members, local groups, and MDTs to identify community needs and facilitate better access to mental health and wellbeing training and resources.

To find out more, check out the CDRCN Facebook page or contact the network on:

info@countydownrcn.com

The Wellbeing Hub in Newcastle is located at 85 Central Promenade.