Kenneth Maclennan was 70 in 2017, one of our founding fathers and the inspiration behind Health and Happiness! This initiative is the result of bringing together some key areas of work, identified by people themselves and their lived experience, and also commemorating Kenneth and all of his years of dedication to us!
The creation of a hub in Inverness (with options for pop-up hubs) and outreach links across Highland is the foundation of Kenneths’ Kommunity. It builds upon out track record of community connecting across Highland but with a focus on some key areas of priority:-
- Love, Friendships and Relationships : we are delighted to connect with Dates ‘n’ Mates on discussing how they can support Health and Happiness to identify funding to bring their successful model to Highland. They have 20 years of experience in developing the infrastructure, ethos and practice of how to support the aspirations of people with learning disabilities to find love, connect with friends, understand and maintain relationships. This is a consistent theme that people ask us about and still tell us that they need help to facilitate opportunities to meet people and maintain connections.
- Independent Living Skills : we have always delivered workshops and training, or connected people to mainstream opportunities, to learn how to create a lifestyle of their choice. This includes safety, responsibility, practical skills, resilience, confidence, self-esteem. The hubs will be a place where more of this can be delivered and other skilled partners join us in sharing their resources and skills.
- Talk-Hear : a peer support listening group. Communication represents a fundamental and important human need and as a basic human right should be open to everyone. We have identified a gap in that not everyone has someone appropriate to talk to, who will listen and be impartial, allow safe expression, but at the same time, does not require formal counselling. This aims to train volunteers and peer listeners to provide a safe and confidential space to ask the questions you dare not ask anyone else and talk about the things you feel that are impossible to be open about with anyone else.
- Tapestry : weaving the threads of community! This builds upon and continues our partnership working and connecting across Highland, with partner projects, building on our asset-based community developments and maximising opportunities at local level to identify local solutions.
This is our ambitious vision,that we have started operationally, but will require further funding so that we can extend our capacity to deliver our dream.