Need: A highly innovative approach to weight management (WM) which helps people negotiate hurdles preventing them from starting positive behaviour change.
Innovation: Wakefield Council designed WM offer with whole-systems approach supporting behaviour change, offering AiM for those in contemplation phase unable to progress into mainstream services.
Partnership: AiM is a repeating 12-week programme created and developed through a working partnership between WC Museums and Health Improvement departments and a specialist facilitator.
Impacts: Programme attracts many first-time museum visitors and those vulnerable to varied wellbeing issues including social isolation, low-mood and anxiety. Participants reported improving isolation, mood and self-efficacy, some achieving weight management goal whilst on the programme.
Each 12 week programme works with a maximum of 10 participants. To date, 38 participants have completed the programme. Session evaluations used Wellbeing Indicator and Generic Learning Outcomes. The facilitator is experienced in observational evaluation and recording changes in attitude and mood, using “5 Ways to Wellbeing”. The majority of participants found increases in wellbeing, contributing to:
The cost per person is higher than mainstream WM, but participants find it very hard to access these services; a vulnerable group needing more specific support. Many participants avoided traditional WM programmes, and even their GP for fear of being ‘told-off’ about their weight. Therefore, changes affected long-term makes the group worth the investment.
By bringing people together to talk about shared issues, using art to show how we're all connected through our experiences, this project is a great example of how the arts can make a huge difference to our health and wellbeing."
Excellent demonstration of how culture can be brought to bear on a complex issue that mainstream interventions couldn't reach."