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Practical support for people living with a stoma in South East England

The Colostomy Association are a national charity providing practical and emotional support to people living with a stoma, their family members and carers. They do this through a helpline, literature and volunteer visits to hospitals and open days.

They applied to Postcode Community Trust following a successful pilot of chair yoga for service users in Bracknell. Following the success here they were keen to deliver regular sessions to people with a stoma at three venues in England: Stevenage, Milton Keynes, and Sheppey.

Studies had proven that activity supports quicker recovery from surgery, helps to lessen the chances of developing a parastomal hernia, and helps to improve mental well-being, however people with a stoma are typically less active than the general population. The charity are therefore encouraging people to take part in regular physical activity with their project.

The project was very successful, with 131 people benefiting from these classes who gave the organisers very encouraging feedback. This included some unintentional but very positive outcomes, including how the classes built the participants’ confidence and social skills!

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