FREE online bereavement, health and wellbeing sessions for anyone affected by grief have been launched by Oldham Active Communities, part of Oldham Community Leisure (OCL), in partnership the Northern Care Alliance NHS Group.
The hour-long weekly sessions will take place via Zoom every Wednesday at 4pm starting on February 3 and are open to all.
Mark Woodcock, Health and Wellbeing Advisor at Oldham Active Communities, said: “The specialist bereavement nurses will be on hand at the start and end of each session to give guidance on grief response, and one of our OCL fitness instructors will also run a simple yoga and mindfulness component.
“The sessions are designed to be suitable for everyone and structured to have a positive impact on the wellbeing of the attendees.
“The online session is a safe environment for people to virtually come together at a time when many people are increasingly feeling isolated and affected by grief due to the pandemic.”
The Northern Care Alliance NHS Group brings together the Salford Royal and Pennine Acute trusts, operating four hospitals and community services in Salford, Oldham, Bury and Rochdale.
The organisation has seven specialist bereavement nurses trained to support and work with the bereaved, to signpost support groups, listen, take action where necessary, and identify the needs of a family.
Fiona Murphy MBE is Director of Nursing for End of Life, Bereavement, Chaplaincy, Organ and Tissue Donation at the Northern Care Alliance NHS Group, as well as being patron of the charity The Good Grief Trust.
She said: “My nurses are ready and experienced to help the bereaved and to offer remote support to the community.
“The pandemic has unfortunately meant many people cannot access the normal support available to them, and many will also be separated from their friends and family in their grief.
“Our bereavement nurses will act as a safety net in these online wellbeing sessions and offer advice and guidance whilst enabling people to connect and talk freely.
“I have been blown away by the commitment and the passion the OCL team show to their community. Their sessions are just another example of OCL being the heart and soul of the community.”
Mr Woodcock added: “OCL is passionate about the positive impact exercise has on people’s mental and physical health and we believe physical activity is a powerful tool to support grieving individuals.
“These unique, specialist bereavement sessions offer attendees both a gentle physical and mental workout.
“Talking, listening, mindfulness and movement is a great combination to develop a coping strategy from grief.”
You can register for the online sessions here. Once registered, attendees will receive an email with the zoom link, ID and passcode for the sessions.
Alternatively, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on the session or if you would prefer the zoom link to be emailed to you directly to you.