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Reasons to smile on International Day of Happiness

To mark the end of a project funded by NHS Charities Together, Your Voice Counts hosted a celebration event to coincide with International Day of Happiness on 20 March.

The funding had been awarded in 2021 by NHS Charities Together, Newcastle Hospitals Charity and County Durham Community Foundation from the Covid-19 Community Partnership Grants Programme (North East and North Cumbria), with Your Voice Counts chosen as one of seven local organisations to deliver initiatives that address health inequalities, improve mental health and wellbeing and reduce social isolation for people with learning disabilities.

Over the course of the project, we have provided a range of opportunities for people with learning disabilities to improve their skills and confidence and connect with others so we were pleased to use leftover funding to organise an International Day of Happiness event to celebrate the end of the project and give people who had been supported the chance to get together and recognise their achievements.

The theme of the day was being mindful, being grateful and being kind so there were lots of activities on offer to give people a reason to smile, including face painting, arts and crafts, bracelet making, Henna, bingo, yoga and mindfulness sessions.

We were also pleased that Jon Goodwin, Head of Grant Programmes at NHS Charities Together, was able to come along to the event and meet some of our staff and the people we work with and see the connections people have made as a result of our work in action.

Lindsay Henderson, Head of Communities at Your Voice Counts, said: “We were delighted to have been one of the project partners and are incredibly grateful to NHS Charities Together for their ongoing support. We have worked closely with other local partners including LD:NE, Adapt and Skills for People to share our learning and expertise and use this to develop our offer for people with learning disabilities in our area. We look forward to continuing to support each other as we respond to the ever growing needs of our communities.”

International Day of Happiness is promoted by Action for Happiness, an organisation dedicated to creating a happier and kinder world. They have lots of helpful resources and tips on their website which are worth a look- visit to find out more.


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