By SANJANA IDNANI
The Croydon BME Forum is to open a Health and Wellbeing Space in the Whitgift Centre in October.
The space will provide services similar to that available at Croydon BME Forum’s other space, The Wellness Centre, which is also in the Whitgift Centre, and will offer free high-quality mental and physical health support to help alleviate stress, anxiety and isolation.
The new centre – which will be located on the first floor, not far from Marks and Spencer – will also have more up to date technology such as QR codes and iPads to manage appointments in a contactless way. The Croydon BME Forum is also investing in a more interactive website for customers to use if they don’t feel comfortable or are unable to come into the centre.
The Health and Wellbeing Space will be set up in partnership with the NHS South West London Clinical Commissioning Group and charity Mind in Croydon.
Due to be open from 10am to 6pm, seven days a week, the space is designed to be community-orientated and will be decorated with artwork created by those who have struggled with their mental health.
Andrew Brown, the Forum’s CEO, said: “The centre is something different and it will not be led by the CCG, it will not be led by the NHS, it will be led by the community, and they will decide how it will look and feel.”
Though the centre will have specific support for crisis management and will be staffed with support workers, Brown also emphasised that the centre shouldn’t feel too clinical: “The centre should be very easy and open to access. The idea is that if someone wants to book an appointment on an iPad, visit the shops, and then come back for an appointment, they can do that.”
The Croydon BME Forum is recruiting for positions at the new space, including a senior support worker and a team manager. The Croydon BME Forum is also looking for 20 volunteers.
“We are very proud to be working in partnership with Mind in Croydon and the NHS South West London CCG to provide better access, experience and outcomes for people who have not previously had a chance to engage with support, including BME communities,” Brown said.
“The new Health and Wellbeing Space will respond to the social and cultural needs of our community, enabling people to address a wide range of needs.”
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