Denise is a resident at one of our facilities, where we have recently started offering women's physical activity sessions. She was sceptical at first because it's something she had never done before, as well as her continuing back pain and usage of a walking stick.

Josh, Sport Project Coordinator - met Denise several times before he started the sessions and explained that they could do any activity she felt comfortable with; she spoke about chair-based exercises and going for walks. Denise explained how she’d been wanting to have someone to go for regular walks with for a while.

‘It's nice to have someone to speak to and something to look forward to every week.’ 

Josh has been working with Denise for around three months now and seen positive changes in both her physical and mental health. Denise has progressed hugely in such a short amount of time and is now doing most exercises standing up. Prior to beginning these sessions, Denise explained how she hadn’t walked without her walking stick for 30 years; she is now walking for 20 minutes per session without her walking stick and improving each week. 

‘I feel like my body is improving for the first time in years. I can't believe my pain is actually getting less.’  

Participating in sports sessions can often be a bridge to further health care and improving other aspects of life. Denise explained how these sessions are giving her confidence to start thinking about engaging with health services once again so she can receive the treatment she needs for a better quality of life. Josh hosted discussions with Samara, SHP Specialist Health Lead, to support Denise with this process. For Denise, the Sport Project is the first step on her road to recovery and is giving her the confidence to engage with health services once more.    

Recently, Denise shared that she has been feeling less stressed and feels happier, something which she attributes to feeling less physical pain. She feels more confident and believes she is heading in a positive direction. Denise has spoken about her hopes going forward,  

‘Doing this gives me hope for the future, I'm a lot more confident. I used to volunteer and help others and I'd like to do it again.’  

It’s clear to see the positive changes Denise has made so far and we’re excited to support her to progress even further!