8 Aug 2006

Physical activity is being put to the test in Powys by four voluntary groups working with people suffering with mental health issues.

Based on evidence that physical activity can improve self esteem and confidence, prevent feelings of isolation and help develop coping mechanisms, the groups recently secured Community Chest grants from the Sports Council for Wales to deliver a varied activity programme to members. Exercise sessions are now making their way into individual development plans in a bid to improve mental as well as physical health.

The groups are also hoping to join forces and start up a healthy lifestyles programme to encourage members from each group to interact and form new relationships.

  • Llanidloes Outreach Project

The Llanidloes based mental health charity which meets weekly is hoping that an introduction to outdoor activities will provide members with the impetus needed to get active.

A £750 Community Chest grant means the group can now offer members the opportunity to test out an assortment of activities at the Red Ridge Outdoor Activity Centre in Welshpool.

A structured activity programme designed by instructors at the centre is designed to meet each person’s ability, taking into account their physical ability, as well as building on their mental ability.

The activity centre, which offers ‘adventure for all’, prides itself on emphasising the positives and minimising the negatives, applauding success and minimising failure. By introducing members to activity in a friendly environment, the Llanidloes project hopes that individuals will gain the confidence to stick with physical activity.

For more information on the project, please contact Alun Jones on