REHABILITY

“Rehability was formed about 35 years ago. It came about with a few guys leaving Holywell Hospital (a mental health facility in Antrim) and they did not know what to do or where to turn to. They met once a week and from that we have grown into a community house.”

 

William Gould, the Centre Manager of Rehability, works tirelessly alongside a dedicated team of 5 staff and 15 volunteers to support people living with long-term mental health problems in the Antrim area.

We’re member-led. If the members need anything and it’s within reason, we’ll do it for them. Whatever they want, we’ll try and get that for them. Members see this really as their second family rather than a club they go to because everybody is just so friendly together.”

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In addition to the 84 members it currently supports, the charity also

works with the wider communities in Antrim, Crumlin, Ballymena,

Carrickfergus and Glengormley and regularly welcomes more than

1,000 people every month to its community house. The charity offers

a wide range of services, including educational courses and relaxation

classes, and the community house itself boosts an onsite gym, games

room, IT suite, TV room, relaxation room as well as a salon where

members can get their cut in a relaxed environment for a minimal

charge.

 

Challenging the stigma around mental health and meeting the social

and recreational needs of its members lies at the very heart of what

Rehability does. The community hall is a safe space where people can

meet and connect with others over a cup of tea or a meal. The team

organises social outings, weekends away and an annual trip to

Blackpool. They also offer weekly shopping trips and a transport

service to help people travel to and from the community hall.

 

During the pandemic, the charity proved to be a lifeline for their members. Not only did the team keep in touch with them on a daily basis, but they also brought essential items to their homes and even delivered Christmas dinner for the past two years running!

 

Rehability has immeasurably improved the quality of life and overall health of the people it supports, from reducing isolation and loneliness to alleviating the physical symptoms of anxiety and stress.

 

Mark, a member who has been attending the community hall since 2011, is one such person who has benefited:

 

“It’s a great service. It gets me out of the house and socialising. The people in here are very friendly and it’s a very relaxed atmosphere.”

 

William described how the funding received last year from the Black Santa Sit-out was spent on pedometers so they could set up a walking group. This year, the money would go towards alternative therapies and relaxation classes.

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