Background

Legal Status
Peninsula Healthy Living Partnership Limited was formed in July 2002 as a Company Limited by Guarantee, Company No. NI43640 and is recognised as a charity for tax purposes by the Inland Revenue – Charitable No. XR41051/2.

Concept
Peninsula Healthy Living developed out of a vision of health in the widest sense. Supported by the South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust (formerly known as the Ulster Community & Hospitals Trust), two members of staff, Dr. Jenny Gingles and Sheila Bailie, were seconded in the autumn of 1998 to explore opportunities for applying to the National Lottery’s New Opportunities Fund under its ‘Healthy Living Centre’ Programme.

Process
Work started in the autumn of 1998 when Dr. Jenny Gingles and Sheila Bailie organised a workshop on 16th November to start the process of engagement with local people and to find out what they felt had a positive and negative affect on their health. This initial consultation was followed by 2 further workshops, on 8th January 1999 and 12th April 2000. These, together with a large number of smaller specific meetings with professional workers and agencies helped to shape a 1st stage application to the New Opportunities Fund, submitted in November 2000.

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HEALTH MINISTER ENDORSES PENINSULA HEALTHY LIVING’S BID TO THE LOTTERY Sheila Bailie, Dr. Bob Mageean, Dr. Jenny Gingles, and Health Minister Bairbre de Brun – 1999

In July 2001 the informal Partnership was invited by the Lottery to the 2nd stage and a full business plan was forwarded to the New Opportunities Fund in November 2001.
In August 2002 Peninsula Healthy Living Partnership was awarded £665,571 under the New Opportunities Fund Healthy Living Centre Programme and the first of the funded activities commenced in November 2002.

After successfully implementing all planned programmes between November 2002 and the summer of 2003, Peninsula Healthy Living Partnership Limited was formally launched on 17th December, 2003 by Jeannie Johnston, local TV celebrity/presenter.

Parallel Processes

Initial consultation on 16th November 1998 revealed that local people believed that the top health gap was the need to improve transport and access to services. Fortunately at this time the Department of Regional Development (DRD) launched the Rural Transport Fund. Dr. Gingles and Sheila Bailie availed of this opportunity and as a separate initiative they formed Peninsula Community Transport Limited, also known as PACT. Because of DRD timescales the transport scheme had to be set up in advance of the main healthy living project. PACT was formed as a Company in March 1999 and obtained charitable status for tax purposes. Dr. Gingles and Sheila Bailie took receipt of the first 2 minibuses on 13th October 1999.

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Another project that started before the receipt of the core healthy living centre grant was Peninsula Afterschools. This need was identified by the Eastern Childcare Partnership. Peninsula Healthy Living Partnership was approached late 2001 and asked to consider meeting a gap in childcare provision on the Peninsula. Peninsula Afterschools started when Sheila Bailie made a successful application to the New Opportunities Fund under their Out of School Hours Programme. The result was the creation of two clubs, one in Portaferry and one in Cloughey. Each club opened Easter 2002, in advance of the announcement of the Healthy Living Centre Programme monies.

Summary of Identified Health Needs/Needs Assessment Findings
The widespread consultation identified key health needs, with lack of transport being the top need:

  • Lack of transport
  • Isolation (young and old)
  • Lack of employment
  • Outward migration
  • Lack of access / fragmentation of service
  • Depression and mental illness
  • Drug and alcohol problems
  • Few opportunities / facilities for sport / recreation / culture

Structures
Peninsula Healthy Living originally consisted of a consortium of members representing the wide interests of the community.  From the consortium a Project Steering Committee was formed in June 1999, supported by 7 Sub-Groups to maintain wide community representation.  The Sub-Groups focused on the following areas: Â

  1. Leisure & Tourism
  2. Services for Youth
  3. Services for Children, Parents & Women
  4. Services for People with a Mental Health, Learning Disability or Physical Disability
  5. Services for People over 50
  6. Environment
  7. Transport

In advance of the announcement for successful stage 2 applicants, the Partnership decided to form a Limited Company. Registration was filed in July 2002 and the new Company was again accepted by the Inland Revenue as a Charity for Tax Purposes.
It had been agreed that the Board should not exceed a maximum of 12 members. The first subscribers to the Company were:

  • Dr. Jenny Gingles (Chairperson)
  • Sheila Bailie (Director/Company Secretary)
  • Carol-Ann Hewitt (Vice Chair)
  • David Quigg (Treasurer)
  • David Smith
  • Valerie Richmond
  • Trevor Patterson
  • Caroline Mahon
  • Dr. Bob Mageean
  • Gerry Fagan
  • Joyce Coffey
  • Briege Arthurs