Freedom Leisure’s Active Communities team works with local communities across the Forest of Dean to get people more active through a wide range of activities & events.
Active Communities FOD works with a wide range of local groups and national partners to get people of all ages and abilities more active across a range of programmes delivered in local communities and leisure facilities “Through our dedicated Active Communities services, Freedom Leisure aims to contribute to creating an active nation by working with our valued partners by developing bespoke local programmes to meet local need... where customers, clients and staff matter.Hannah Gilday, Group Active Communities Manager.
In the Forest of Dean, we develop a wide range of sporting programmes, working with Active Gloucestershire, local clubs, National Governing Bodies of Sport and the English Federation of Disability Sport. In FOD we sponsor the Forest of Dean District Council Sport Awards to recognise the Sportsperson of the Year and offer support with their training. We will be looking to develop a Talented Athlete Scheme to assist them further.
Active Young People
We work with children, young people and families across FOD of all ages and abilities to encourage them into a more active habit for life. We have a range of holiday activities including the Junior Summer Fitness Challenge, Xplorer and Family Fun Days. As well as a variety of 7-19 years activity programmes; learn to swim opportunities; inclusive youth programmes and much more.
We encourage all people in FOD, regardless of ability to age well. We lead a range of programmes such as Walking Netball and Walking Football to encourage those aged 60+ to have fun, socialise and focus on improving mental and physical wellbeing. We are committed to improving opportunities for those facing dementia or who care for someone with dementia to remain active by supporting community groups with activities and making our own sessions more dementia friendly.
Across FOD we work with over 100 community groups and organisations to develop even more opportunities for local people to get involved in fun activities. We support annual events such as the Forest Activities Festival alongside local community events across the district. We aim to engage hard to reach groups from priority wards to deliver specific community-led programmes to help in making the most of where people live. Our activecommFOD Facebook page is where you will find us!
We want to get all people more active, including those who find their working life in FOD a reason for not being as active as they may want. As ‘sitting is the new smoking’, we want to work with more local businesses to find out what their employees would love to do with us to get more active around their job. We work with Hartpury College and University of Gloucestershire to provide opportunities to volunteer with our teams and support projects.
Health and physical activity come hand in hand and we know the importance of preventing health issues later in life. We offer local health programmes including; GP Referral, a Health membership and are developing Adult Weight Management classes. Our staff are trained to encourage everyone who wants to improve their health into an opportunity right for them.
"Our 2018-19 development plan outlines the exciting growth we envisage for the Forest of Dean and highlights programmes we are committed to deliver based on research and insight. This year we are excited to have additional resource with an Active Communities Assistant adding significantly to our reach and service delivery. Some key projects to note include targeted programmes in some of our most deprived wards such as Friday Night Project working with local Police Community Support Officers, growing our Inclusive offer of swimming and multi-sports with funding secured to support this for 2 years and working on making the centres more accessible and Dementia friendly. With the help of our partners and local stakeholders we feel we are fully equipped and excited for the years ahead. We will be capturing active participation and wider partner engagement throughout the year"Steph Moreland, Forest of Dean Active Communities Officer