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Connect

“Those who bring sunshine into the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves” – JM Barrie

Building connections and social networks is important to your wellbeing and will support and enrich you every day.

There is strong evidence that social relationships are important for promoting wellbeing and for acting as a buffer against mental ill health for people of all ages.
Research has also found that happy people have stronger social relationships than less happy people – this may be because social networks promote a sense of belonging and wellbeing.

Warwickshire wellbeing hubs

Warwickshire Wellbeing hubs are available in local communities across Warwickshire. If you wish to connect with others and find out more about ways to enhance your wellbeing, or if you are feeling stressed, worried or low, please get in touch with your local hub.

Why not join a reading group or set up your own?

Connect with others through your local library – Find out more about reading groups

Attend a community forum

We work with the five district and borough councils and Warwickshire Police across the county to hold regular meetings, known as community forums. Local health services and the voluntary sector are also involved. Community forums are open public meetings, held four times per year at various locations within your local area on weekday evenings.
At the meetings, you have the chance to discuss what’s important to you in your community with local councillors, police, and organisations that provide public services.
Examples of matters that are raised include:

  • anti-social behaviour
  • roads/highways
  • speeding
  • parking
  • street lighting
  • housing
  • schools
  • youth provision
  • waste/recycling
  • environmental health

Find out more about community forums.

Research

The following observations have been suggested by research.

  • Social relationships are important for promoting wellbeing and for acting as a buffer against mental ill-health.
  • Social networks promote a sense of belonging and wellbeing.
  • The most significant difference between people with good mental wellbeing and people with mental ill-health is social participation.
  • A primary social network (defined as the total number of close relatives and friends) of three or less predicts the probability of common mental health disorders (CMDs) in the future (even when previous CMDs have been adjusted for).
  • Life goals associated with a commitment to family, friends, social and political involvement promoted life satisfaction. In contrast, life goals associated with career success and material gains were harmful to life satisfaction.

Since the evidence indicates that feeling close to, and valued by, other people is an important human need and one that contributes to functioning well in the world, the idea of connecting with people is important.

A person may have a broad social network and socialise with lots of people, but their relationships may not be close or may lack depth. Equally, a person may have strong social relationships but have few connections with people outside of their core network. Strong social relationships are supportive, encouraging, and meaningful.

Broader, more ‘superficial’ relationships are important for feelings of connectedness, familiarity and sense of self-worth associated with an individual’s position in a community. Happy people have stronger social relationships than less happy people.