Residents of Blackpool Fylde and Wyre are being urged to improve their physical and mental health by joining one of 3,000 groups promoted on the FYi directory.
The FYi Directory provides a comprehensive list of more than 3,000 local services, support groups, childcare providers, and activities. A partnership venture started in 2017 between the Fylde Coast NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups and Blackpool Council, listings range from statutory health and social care services to local sports clubs, community support groups and volunteering opportunities, plus much more.
During the pandemic many groups had to maintain social distancing and so could not operate as they were. Now, they need new members.
Some Fylde Coast residents are already taking advantage of the directory with an average of just over 7,000 visits over the last three months. Top searches for the last three months include trusted traders, nurseries and sports clubs. The list also shows an increase in searches for support for young people with Blackpool’s local offer for young people with special educational needs and mental health support for young people also in the top ten.
Dr Neil Hartley-Smith, a Fylde Coast GP and clinical director for the two Fylde Coast CCGs said: “The pandemic lockdown has had a huge effect on people’s health as a result of not being able to go out as much and people have become more isolated and lonelier. This is something health services will now have to deal with. One of the best solutions is to encourage people to get out and meet like-minded people. Be productive by taking up a new sport or a hobby and making new friends. It can be anything from knitting to photography.
“I would really urge people who are feeling isolated to search the directory and see if there is something for you. Likewise, if you know someone who has been lonely during lockdown now is the time to encourage them to give something new a try.”
Dr Arif Rajpura, Director of Public Health at Blackpool Council, said: “The FYi directory is a valuable resource for residents, especially now we are returning to a more normal way of life.
“There are so many fantastic services locally, but it can be difficult to know where to start when looking for health or wellbeing support.
“This directory acts as a one-stop-shop and already contains some amazing local groups, activities and services.
“If you’re looking to get out and about more, gain a new hobby or find a way back into fitness, there’s bound to be a local group that’s perfect for you.”
Accessible online at www.fyidirectory.co.uk, When it was launched in 2017 the directory was a first of its kind in the country and is still visited 7,000 times a month with a slight increase in June as some lockdown restrictions were lifted.
If you run a sports club or social group now is the time to update your listing on the FYi directory as more people are searching for post-lockdown activities.