Sport England’s Together Fund has recently supported a community group based at St. Andrew’s Church, Church Aston, near Telford.

The group offer weekly ‘Community Cuppa’ sessions in their community hall, providing a warm, social space for people to meet to help combat isolation and loneliness in the local community.

Yoga at Church Aston Telford

With millions of people without spare income to spend, there is a considerable risk that the cost-of-living crisis will force us further into a loneliness epidemic with many forced to reduce their social time. These impacts have also forced many to reduce their involvement in sport and physical activity, with nearly 40% of people across all demographics stating that the cost-of-living increase has had a negative impact on their ability to be active (Sport England, 2022).

Amy Griffiths, Empowering Communities Manager at Energize, said:

"Residents from across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin are deemed to be at significant risk from the cost-of-living crisis, with Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin classified in the top 25% of most vulnerable areas across England (Cost of Living Vulnerability Index, 2022). Given this challenging climate, it is now more important than ever that community initiatives who offer much needed support like Church Aston’s Community Cuppa continue and can grow to meet the increasing needs of their local community."

With the support of Sport England’s Together Fund the community group based at St. Andrew’s Church have been able to continue the Community Cuppa initiative, adding regular yoga sessions with funding going towards supporting the purchase of yoga equipment and tuition.

Hilary one of the Community Cuppa organisers, said:

“These sessions have grown in popularity and evolved into a lively, welcoming and accepting place which attracts between 50-70 people every week... The teams of volunteers ensure everyone has time to chat, and with a regular clientele, volunteers soon notice if someone is less well or worried and can signpost to appropriate support or spend more time chatting things through."

Feedback from one participant stated:

“I didn’t feel like getting up today and then I remembered it was Yoga and how much better I feel afterwards.”

Yoga at Church Aston Telford

We look forward to seeing how the sessions progress and wish the group all the best as they continue.

You can see the group’s Facebook page here: