A project that aims to help people to improve their moods, reduce the risk of depression and strengthen relationships has been launched.
The www.wheelofwellbeing.org (WoW) website provides users with a range of material from self-help to formulating your own mental health strategy. Aimed at those with mental ill health and professionals, the site provides a range of tips and ideas. Built around ‘six ways to wellbeing’ the site explores areas including body, mind, connecting and caring.
WoW is the result of an on-going partnership between the mental health promotion team at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and strategic design consultancy, uscreates, who have been working together since 2008 to develop new ways to promote positive mental health and wellbeing across London.
The website is divided into three easy-to-navigate sections:
WoW Yourself: This is the ‘do-it-yourself’ section. It has practical resources – tips to test, activities to try and places to visit – designed to inspire people to take positive steps to improve their wellbeing.
Much of the content is crowd-sourced and encourages users to submit their own tips and places. People can create a personal ‘WOW Wish-list’ and record their progress on a ‘WOW Tracker’.
WoW Your Community: For people working in the public, private or voluntary sector, this section showcases practical tools and offers creative ideas for using the Wheel of Wellbeing in organisations, workplaces and local communities.
WoW Strategy: Designed to provide advice and inspiration to professionals tasked with improving wellbeing through policy development, service design and delivery, public health and local government, this section is a ‘work-in-progress’.
The WOW portfolio includes 2 games – DIY Happiness and Truth, Dare, Share – a community event-planning toolkit, free logos and branding information and a series of training and development approaches which include DIY Happiness and happier@work.
Mark Drinkwater, health inequalities and social care officer at Voluntary Action Lewisham, was one of the first people to try out the website. “It's an excellent resource, with some great information on the site, such as information about keeping a gratitude diary,” he said. “I've also used the One Minute Masterpieces exercise, which worked as an ice-breaker for a training session.
“A further great feature is the interactive tips section where participants can share their tips about achieving happiness.”
Lucy Smith, public health manager for mental wellbeing at the London Borough of Southwark, also welcomed the resources. “They’re also downloadable which makes them accessible to our staff and their clients who don’t have internet access,” she said. “The WoW Tracker gives you a great incentive to complete the wheel.”
Zoe Reed, director organisation and community, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, added: “It is a fantastic example of how people can take a proactive approach in helping themselves and others in a meaningful way. It’s important for us that the WoW site explores both physical and mental health as we strongly believe in wellbeing centred around the whole person. The site does this in a very effective way.”