The Bogside & Brandywell Health Forum is a healthy living centre based in Northern Ireland which has pioneered community-led health improvement since 2001.
Bogside and Brandywell is an area of deep deprivation and high health inequalities. The Health Forum coordinates a rolling programme of health promotion and development in various community venues throughout the area. It prides itself on being able to initiate projects that can be financially sustainable, independent and can continue on outside the Health Forum.
A fantastic example of a project initiated by the Health Forum is the Pink Ladies group. Originally just a supporting network for those who had first had hand experience or a carer or friend of a woman who had experienced breast cancer; it has now developed on to be an active group organising and delivering activities, as well as fundraising and lobbying.
The Forum also set up The Drinkthink Project in 2009 in an attempt to combat the uprising culture of binge drinking in Derry as well as way to prevent future generations from the harms associated with alcohol. The project works with families, alcohol retailers, workplaces and the general public in promoting a cultural change in their attitude toward binge drinking.
The Forum also runs the Roots project, an exercise referral programme designed to improve the health of older people at risk of social isolation and ill-health.
General Manager, Tony Doherty said, “The Bogside and Brandywell Health Forum has not only made a serious difference it has created a sustainable Forum which continues to have a major impact on health improvement in the local community and beyond.”
The Bogside and Brandywell Health Forum won Best Health Project in the 2012 National Lottery Awards.
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