Darnall Allotment Project awarded ‘Nature Hubs’ grant

Vegetables growing on the allotment

Our partner organisation Darnall Allotment Project has been announced as one of 100 winners nationwide of The Nature Hubs Fund, a new initiative that aims to widen community access to green spaces. Hubbub and Starbucks received over 600 submissions for funding when they announced the Nature Hubs grant applications were open for applicants in November 2023.

Vegetable beds in summer
Vegetables growing at the allotment in summer

The grants, awarded by environmental charity Hubbub and funded by Starbucks, have been allocated to community groups and projects that will increase local access to green space, upskill communities, bring people together in nature and / or build climate resilience. In total, over £560,000 in grants is being awarded to 100 Nature Hubs projects across Great Britain with the aim of bringing nature closer to people and people closer to nature.

Awarded £5,000, Darnall Allotment Project will use the funding to deliver their Grow Together sessions and improve the allotment.

Sarah Emberson at Darnall Allotment Project said: “Creating, maintaining and encouraging involvement in green spaces within our local community is so important, not only for our mental and physical wellbeing but also to foster a strong sense of community and connectedness. We’re delighted to receive this Nature Hubs grant from Hubbub and Starbucks and are looking forward to seeing the huge impact that the development of this project will have on our local community.”

Gavin Ellis, Co-founder at Hubbub said: “Access to safe and inclusive green spaces, particularly in urban areas, is so critical to our mental, physical and social wellbeing. Improving the green spaces in our towns and cities also helps to improve biodiversity, cool our streets and provide fantastic opportunities to grow fresh produce. The Nature Hubs initiative is designed to make these natural spaces – and the many wonderful ways to engage in environmental activities within them – much more accessible for everyone.

“We received so many incredible applications from community groups across Great Britain and are really excited to work with all of our new Nature Hubs partners to see the impact that these varied and ambitious plans will have on local communities.”

The Nature Hubs scheme is funded by Starbucks and is part of Hubbub and Starbucks’ wider ambition to build stronger, greener communities across the UK. The fund aims to improve access and connection to nature in the communities Starbucks serves, by creating green spaces within a 5km radius of Starbucks stores.

Autism Support

Autism support poster
Autism support poster

From May 2024 we are taking self-referrals for people who are in need of support whilst on the waiting list for an Autism diagnosis. Contact details are on the poster above.

“What is Health?” Festival of Debate 2024 event

Festival of Debate logo

We were pleased to be involved in the “What is Health? Peckham Experiment & Communities” debate at Sheffield’s Festival of Debate on Thursday 16th May 2024.

a still image from video about the Peckham Project
Local people enjoying the Peckham Project

As well as hearing from speakers Jack Czauderna (our founder), Rob Copeland (Director of AWRC) and Simon Duffy (Citizen Network), we also heard from Waqas Hameed and Alfred Sandy from our team, alongside Nigel from from Manor & Castle Development Trust and Glyn from the People Focused Group in Doncaster. Together, they explored the core principles of the ‘Peckham Experiment‘, which have inspired the creation of ambitious and dynamic community-led healthy neighbourhoods in South Yorkshire.

All agreed that the Peckham Experiment was a great example of community and ongoing relationships, whilst also considering what has changed since the project was ended in 1950, both for better and for worse. The panel and audience discussed ways in which our organisations can continue the Peckham legacy. As Waqas said “We’re a small organisation, but with big ambitions”!

We were glad to have a number of members of the Pioneer Health Foundation in the audience with us. Jason Brannan, Deputy Director of AWRC, was the “keynote listener”, providing a helpful and insightful summary of the key points covered at the end of the debate, and reminding us of Glyn’s message “Don’t give away your power!”.

people seated around a meeting table
The Pioneer Health Foundation visit to DWB

The day after the Festival of Debate, we were pleased to host a meeting with members of the Pioneer Health Foundation. We were also joined by our long term volunteer and service user, Jean, as well as by our embedded researcher, Dave Hembrough. The debate about “what is health” continued, with a lot of interesting conversations around buildings, funding and numerous other topics.

Second anniversary for Civic Fellowship with AWRC

Civic Fellowship youth interns and researchers 2024

Sheffield Hallam University’s Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre has celebrated the second anniversary of the Civic Fellowship programme aimed at fostering strong partnerships between local community-based organisations and academic researchers.

Civic Fellowship youth interns and researchers 2024
Civic Fellowship youth interns with AWRC researchers Dave and Charlotte

The Civic Fellowship has enabled research projects between the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) and Darnall Well Being. The Civic Fellowship program is funded by Westfield Health and delivered in partnership with Darnall Well Being and the Darnall Education and Skills Academy (DESA). The focus of the program is on the role of sport and physical activity in raising aspirations, creating improved employability, and enhancing health outcomes for young residents of Darnall.

The project team interviewed community leaders to gain insights into Darnall and explore how sport and physical activity can contribute to social outcomes and improved employment for youth in the area. They also worked with paid youth interns, to understand how young Darnall residents were building resilience in the aftermath of the pandemic. The AWRC recruited 12 interns aged between 16 and 23-years-old and investigated their physical activity, wellbeing, experiences living in the area, and any barriers to employment opportunities.

Themes also included focus on the roles that family, friends, finance and school plays in contributing to leading a fit and healthy life with meaningful employment and contributing to society.

A celebration event to mark the conclusion of the second year of the Civic Fellowship programme was held at the AWRC on Thursday 18 April 2024. At the event, the youth interns presented their research findings and shared their experiences and learnings, highlighting the support they need to achieve their aspirations. 

Civic Fellowship certificate
A Civic Fellowship certificate for the youth interns

Dave Hembrough, project lead and research fellow at Sheffield Hallam University, said: “This Civic Fellowship has been a valuable opportunity to deepen our understanding of the challenges and aspirations of young people in Darnall. By working closely with Darnall Well Being and the local community, we have been able to co-create research that can directly benefit the residents and inform future initiatives.”

Lucy Melleney, CEO of Darnall Well Being, added: “We are pleased to support the second year of the Civic Fellowship as it reflects the shared values and genuine commitment to do things differently.  It places young people’s voice and lived experience at the heart of community-based research and can be a powerful asset in developing our understanding of the needs and aspirations of local young people.”

The Civic Fellowship is part of a set of wider commitments it has made to the region under its Civic University Agreement.

Professor Rob Copeland, Director of the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre said: “The Civic Fellowship program is a testament to Sheffield Hallam University’s commitment to meaningful engagement with the local community. By fostering these partnerships, we aim to create lasting positive impact and ensure that our research and initiatives truly address the needs and priorities of all our communities.”

Find out more about about Sheffield Hallam University’s civic commitments.

Civic fellowships have been established to nurture strong partnerships between local community-based organisations and academic researchers at Sheffield Hallam, as part of the University’s ongoing Civic commitments.

The first Civic Fellowship enables research projects between the AWRC and Darnall Well Being. This partnership enhances the place-based research of the AWRC and has been made possible through the  support of Westfield Health.

The project demonstrated that young adults want to actively contribute to the development and wellbeing of the area and particularly want to engage with each other, building their links and networks to support the whole community.

Roma Community Support

Roma community event - April 2024

Thanks to the trust that she has built in the Roma community during her time working with us, Lucie Ward, one of our Community Development Workers, has been working closely with Dr Owen Parker and Olga Fuseini from the University of Sheffield on the challenges faced by Roma communities in navigating the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS). They have organised workshops, including at Darnall Well Being, to inform the local Roma community about EUSS. Lucie, Owen and Olga have also been working with Sheffield City Council in relation to various current and ongoing challenges faced by Roma people.

In addition, Lucie has worked with the University of Sheffield on a series of information resources on EUSS, and has made them all easily accessible in a padlet here:


In early April 2024, we collaborated with the University to run a workshop for Roma community members from Darnall and Tinsley. Ten people from different local families attended, and were enthusiastic in participating in conversations, learning more about EUSS resources and support. They can now share what they have learned onwards with others in the local Roma communities, empowering people to understand and manage their own EU settled status.

Owen has recently shared Lucie’s extensive knowledge and insights with the EU delegation in London, as well as with national charities advocating on behalf of Roma (such as the Roma Support Group) and EU citizens (such as the3million and Here for Good). This work has contributed to broader campaigning efforts aimed at achieving practical changes to EUSS. 

The feedback Owen gave us about Lucie’s involvement just shows how important the links are that she has built and continues to maintain:

“Lucie’s vital work and extensive knowledge of the practical difficulties encountered by the Roma community in relation to EUSS has been invaluable in helping us to shape a set of recommendations that, if implemented, would make it much easier for vulnerable Roma EU citizens to apply for and use their status in the UK.”    

Owen Parker

Community Connector – Spring 2024

Front page of the Community Connector

We’re happy to share the latest edition of the Community Connector newsletter. Working with Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park, Tinsley Forum, St Alban’s House Christian Community and local resident Shabir Aziz, we have put together content from over 40 different organisations. We’ve actually expanded from 16 to 20 pages, to fit it all in!

Printed copies will be available to pick up in public places around the local area, or you can read it online here:

Staying healthy during Ramadan

Page giving details about how to stay physically healthy whilst fasting during Ramadan.

Fasting is a big part of Ramadan, and it’s important to take care of your health whilst you fast. Here are some easy tips to help you stay healthy during Ramadan.

What to eat

When you break your fast, foods like whole grains, proteins, and healthy fats can help to keep you energized throughout the day. Choose foods that give you long-lasting energy and help control your blood sugar. Try not to overeat, and focus on foods that give you the nutrients you need.

Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water when you’re not fasting. Try to include water-rich fruits and vegetables in your meals, too. Avoid too many drinks with caffeine or sugar in, as they can just make you feel thirsty.


To stay healthy, you could do some light exercise when you’re not fasting, like having a short walk, stretching, or doing other gentle exercises. Save more intensive exercise for times when you’re not fasting, so you don’t feel tired or dehydrated.


Try to make sure you get enough sleep each night. Getting enough sleep is important for helping you to feel good and think clearly.

The MCB have put together a more detailed guide to looking after yourself during Ramadan. Two pages from it can be viewed here, or you can download the full guide below.

Fasting with Diabetes

There can be risks associated with fasting when you are living with Diabetes – we recommend talking to your healthcare team and Imam before deciding whether to go ahead with fasting. We also put together the flyer below to help with what to think about if you’re thinking of fasting and you live with Diabetes.

Cervical Screening Drop-In Clinics at Darnall Primary Care Centre

Cervical screening drop in clinic flyer

Cervical Cancer Prevention Week 2024 is a good time to share about the work our social prescribing team have been doing with Primary Care Sheffield for some time, to promote uptake amongst local women of cervical screening drop-ins. It’s great to see that the approach was recognised by Nursing in Practice GP Awards. Our health and wellbeing workers have found it is so helpful that an interpreter is available at these sessions, when they’re encouraging local women to attend for screening. Flyers for the clinics are shared below.

Support over Christmas 2023

Christmas support information

Our offices may be closed over Christmas, but we’ve put together some sources of help in Sheffield, if you’re in need over the festive period.

Christmas support information

2024 Activities

DWB activity group schedule May 2024

Our regular activity schedule is below. You can also check our calendar for the latest information on sessions.

DWB activity group schedule May 2024

Our activity groups offer something for everyone. If you haven’t been before, why not do something new and give one of our friendly activity groups a try? Just give us a call or email us and we can book you onto any of the sessions. No need to commit to a block of sessions – just give one a try and see how you find it, whether that’s online or in person. All are welcoming groups, with a mix of people from around the Darnall and Tinsley area.

Meeting room of men standing and seated together around a table
Men’s Health Group
group of women standing on grass in a park, smiling to camera
Green Social Prescribing Walk
women working at crafts around a colourful table.
Craft Group
4 women on yoga mats in a community hall, in child's pose.
Tinsley Women’s Yoga

We often have one-off sessions or events, so please take a look at our events calendar to check for what’s coming up:

Staying Safe at our Activities

Whilst we have opened up our face-to-face activity after lockdowns, we will continue to maintain safe working practices. This means:

  • You are welcome and encouraged to wear a mask where you can or feel more comfortable to do so.
  • Keep a safe distance between yourself and others
  • We will continue to manage group sizes for activities
  • We will maintain cleaning and hygiene practices
  • We ask if you are unwell or do test positive with Covid-19, you do not attend
  • We encourage you to get your vaccines/booster

Diabetes Peer Support Group

diabetes graphic

Our peer support groups in Darnall and Tinsley meet regularly to give advice and support to people living with diabetes.

Each meeting, the groups look at a different topic and provide support and encouragement to each other. Recent subjects have included:

  • Managing Diabetes during Ramadan
  • General information about Diabetes – what it is and how to manage the condition
  • Healthy eating
  • Stroke awareness
  • Cancer awareness

In the diabetes group I’ve learnt about caring for my feet, about diabetes in general and about sugars in food from a dietician. I’ve also been on a Desmond Course which I wouldn’t have been too.
The diabetes Group has opened my eyes that you have to take care of your medication and yourself. I wasn’t taking my statins before going to the diabetes group but now I understand better that it is important to take my medication consistently. I’ve learnt to have a healthy balance of food and to only have certain things in moderation. I take much better care of myself. – Diabetes Group participant

Persistent Pain Peer Support Group

pain graphic

Our monthly group meets to offer support to live well with persistent pain.

Persistent Pain poster

Our friendly group can provide support, advice and ideas for managing pain. Recent topics have included:

  • Pacing yourself
  • Priorities and planning
  • Setting goals
  • Medication

The group sometimes has guest speakers to cover relevant topics, such as Manasi Peters, the Physiotherapy Supervisor at the local Primary Care Network. One group was run by 2 Occupational Therapy students on placement with us, who did some art therapy with the group. Photos from that session are below:

Some recent feedback from group attendees:

I learned to pace myself – from the toolkit of pain.

I learned to take breaks more often.

I really enjoyed the session and got helpful information.

Long Covid Peer Support Group

Long Covid graphic

If you’re living with Long Covid, our friendly group can help you find ways to manage.

Long Covid support group poster

If you have been diagnosed with Long Covid or suspect you may have it, you are welcome to join our helpful monthly group. They discuss a different topic each time, and thanks to our collaboration with Sheffield Hallam University’s Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre, we find out about new research opportunities relating to Long Covid.

Thanks to Sheffield Community Contact Tracers for funding us to run these sessions.

Conversation Group

chat graphic

Our collaboration with SAVTE has brought an English conversation group back to Darnall Primary Care Centre!

SAVTE conversation group flyer

These friendly English conversation sessions are for people who do not speak English as their first language. They are a great opportunity to improve your confidence and get to know others in your local community, in a supportive group.