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Surrey Coalition - RainbowSURREY COALITION  
Our virtual Café will have four rooms within the café itself for you to discuss things that interest you. When you join the café on Mondays, please let us know what topic you are interested in and we will assign you to a room.

The rooms available are:  
1. Films, TV and Books
2. Tech Quiz
3. Food and Baking
4. Travel Tales – Talk about your travel adventures!

Disabled Motoring (DMUK) tackles supermarkets over disabled parking abuse. Supported by Baroness Grey-Thompson. Edited from DMUK Website

A common problem for many disabled motorists is not being able to park at their desired destination, especially at their local supermarket. The major complaint is that the disabled bays are all occupied with cars not displaying a Blue Badge.

Disabled Motoring UK’s Baywatch campaign seeks to address this. This campaign researches the level of disabled parking abuse at supermarkets, by asking disabled motorists to survey their local supermarket car park. Specifically, they count how many disabled bays are provided and how many cars that are parked in them without displaying a Blue Badge. The other information we ask for is details of the type of enforcement (if any) carried out by the parking operator responsible for the car park. Details of the operator and enforcement should be displayed on the signage near the disabled bays.

When the survey closes the results are calculated, published and sent to the supermarkets to encourage them to work with the charity to improve their parking policies with regard to tackling disabled bay abuse by using effective enforcement. The Baywatch campaign also aims to change public attitudes by bringing to the attention of disabled bay abusers the impact that their actions can have.

We usually run the Baywatch Campaign in June. However, last year the campaign seemed very popular when talking to people at the summer disability events. Therefore, we have decided to run Baywatch 2020 in the month of August in the hope that even more people will take part. Full details of how to take part will be published on our website in August.

We hope to make this year bigger and better than ever before and have a number of organisations supporting Baywatch 2020.

All our regional centres are closed and therapeutic gardening programmes for client gardeners have been postponed until further notice. We know many of our client gardeners living with disabilities and long-term health conditions rely on the therapeutic programmes and social care we provide, but maintaining client safety, and that of our staff and volunteers, is paramount.

We’ve also postponed all our community outreach programmes, face-to-face training courses and public events, but our work spreading the message about the health and wellbeing benefits of gardening continues, as it is even more relevant in these stressful times.

Everyone is quickly having to adjust to the new normal which is that nothing is normal anymore and nor is it likely to be for some considerable time to come. Most of us will be confronted with the prospect of staying at home and the challenge of keeping our mental wellbeing on an even keel while we take self-isolating measures to protect our physical health.

There is one resource that can make a proven difference to our health and wellbeing and that 87 per cent of UK households have access to – a garden.

If your usual form of exercise is now off-limits, there are many gardening tasks that can help give your body a workout. As former Thrive Patron and ex-president of the Royal College of Physicians, Sir Richard Thompson, puts it: `There’s a gym outside many a window.’

Digging or forking over a flower or veg bed, for instance, will soon have you working up a sweat and burning hundreds of calories that can help healthy weight management. The sheer variety of gardening tasks requiring physical movement means most muscle groups will get a workover, and at the same time co-ordination and balance will benefit too. Just being in sunlight offers an opportunity to top up vitamin D levels, while helping to lower blood pressure.

Psychologists have long advocated that nature is a restorative environment offering recovery from mental fatigue.

`Time in gardens can be very diversionary, offering a mental space for thoughts beyond the current situation and the anxiety it causes,’ said Damien Newman, Thrive’s Training, Education and Consultancy Manager. `Gardens slow us down, occupying our minds and offering us benefits akin to mindfulness and meditation without having to learn those techniques.

To help you keep body and soul together during lockdown, we’ve launched the Thrive Gardening Club, which we hope will encourage, inspire and give you positive things to do and think about.

Sign-up to receive free updates to get the most out of your own garden, including ;  

  • How-to guides for gardening jobs   
  • Activities for children  
  • Tips to help you garden if you have a disability or long-term health condition  
  • Ways to benefit from nature if you don’t have a garden  

Plus, lots more about how gardening can keep you healthy and feeling well, all regularly delivered free to your email box.

Keep the kids happy with Annabelle's garden activities  


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