In conversation with… Luana
Luana Baptista, a link worker at Age UK Islington, explains how green social prescribing is helping Islington residents get well and stay well
What is your role?
If someone mentions to their GP that there are issues or barriers that affect their lifestyle or social life, they may be referred to me. Acting as a ‘link’ between the GP and the community, I look at the whole person and help them with whatever matters to them, such as getting out of debt, staying independent, keeping active or making connections.
How does social prescribing work?
In the first appointment, which can take place over the phone or in person, we discuss what they need support with and any barriers they may face.
For example, if they lack confidence or struggle physically, I can arrange community transport, a travel buddy, or another solution.
What sorts of activities might you prescribe?
We’re lucky to have great parks in Islington, so I often prescribe people to wellbeing walks, chair-based yoga, gardening or volunteering sessions, and nature-based arts and crafts workshops.
They can help people become more active and connected to the community. Being outside and feeling like we are part of something can provide a natural boost – and it’s free!
If you would like to join a nature-based activity, contact your GP, or visit the parks page of the Islington Council website.
Alternatively, you can call Age UK Islington’s helpline on 020 7281 6018