Rutherglen and Cambuslang’s community health initiative is showing the world how to improve its communities.
The Healthy ‘ n’ Happy Community Development Trust is becoming well known across the world, as, over the last few months, visitors from Canada, Denmark and Northern Ireland have met staff in the new premises in Rutherglen.
They have spent time talking to local people and finding out about the many activities, services and developments which are delivered across Cambuslang and Rutherglen.
The six Canadian visitors were very impressed with the community development work Healthy ‘n’ Happy is carrying out with residents in some of the local neighbourhoods.
They were also particularly excited by the variety of ways in which the charity successfully works with and involves individuals with mental health issues.
The visitors made time to appreciate the anti-stigma community art work which engaged over 500 local people during Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival. They extended their visit by over an hour to allow them to hear more about Healthy ‘n’ Happy.
A member of staff from the Scottish Community Development Centre commented that: “Safe to say the visitors were blown away by what you are all doing out there!”
One of the visitors summed it up, saying: “Healthy ‘n’ Happy was the high point of our visit to Scotland... I appreciated very much the fact that – as an area based group – you were able to include mental health in your diverse activities. I think, as such, it is very inclusive.”
The leader of the team of three experienced community development staff from Denmark was overwhelmed by the range and diversity of the work undertaken by Healthy ‘n’ Happy. He concluded that Healthy ‘n’ Happy would be a great model for the future development of social services in Denmark.
He commented: “There is so much to be learned from Healthy ‘n’ Happy from the hands-on approach to your ethos and empowerment agenda! We will be building the work of Health n Happy into our ‘scaling stories’ to assist with learning and development in Denmark.”
Healthy ‘n’ Happy has established strong relationships with the Healthy Living Centre Network in Northern Ireland and in a recent visit by members of the NI Government, the Healthy Living Centre Network and social services staff, the leader of the delegation congratulated Healthy ‘n’ Happy on their excellent work and summarised their visit by saying: “It certainly surpassed my expectation and I wish you every success in your amazing work. The positivity in your organization was palpable.”
The executive director for Healthy ‘n’ Happy, Brendan Rooney said: “Healthy ‘n’ Happy has gained a very positive reputation locally for delivering high quality, professional services and activities. It is very heartening to see that our work is also being recognised and appreciated across many countries.
“We are truly becoming a world class organisation thanks to the hard work of the staff team and the positive support from the people of Cambuslang and Rutherglen”.
Guests Healthy ‘n’ Happy in Rutherglen welcome their international visitors