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Perspect Public Health. 2013 Sep;133(5):272-9. doi: 10.1177/1757913913480292. Epub 2013 Mar 18.

Improving well-being through community health improvement: a service evaluation.

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Health Improvement Manager, Salford City Council, Salford, UK.


This paper describes the establishment of a health improvement service delivered in a socio-economically deprived region of the UK. Recent service reorganisation has provided the opportunity to consider new outcome measures. Results from a service evaluation conducted during integration into local council services are presented. Individuals living in socially excluded communities may require support to feel involved in their local community and to develop supportive networks. In turn, this support could be protective to their health and well-being. This paper will explore how community development activities delivered by Salford Health Improvement Service (SHIS) can support measurable improvements in well-being. Data are drawn from a validated structured questionnaire that measured well-being before and after involvement in a range of community-based interventions based upon established community development principles. The questionnaire was completed by 404 individuals. The paper is UK focused and as such is situated within the context of predominantly UK-based community development literature. The findings indicate that the community development interventions delivered by SHIS do produce positive outcomes in terms of increasing participants' level of well-being. Self-reported well-being improved in 75% of participants. Community development approaches may be an effective approach in supporting people to become engaged in activities that facilitate healthy lifestyles.


community development; health improvement; self-reported well-being; service evaluation

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