Circles & Your Community

Circles Connected

“We all want to live in the place we call home, with the people and things that we love, in communities where we look out for one another, doing what matters to us”

This is the #socialcarefuture we want to be a part of and Circles Connected is how we are working alongside local communities to connect people around shared interests.

Circles Connected is a partnership between Community Circles and Wellbeing Teams to challenge loneliness and social isolation by starting with what matters to people and creating opportunities to connect through shared interests, passions and contributions in ways that benefits individuals and builds inclusive communities.

Circles Connected offers a programme of face to face events and opportunities based on people’s interests, hosted by our local Circle Connector.

A typical month could include;

  • Weekly Coffee Clubs – for people to meet up, for new-comers to be welcomed, and for people to plan their week and share their ideas for events
  • Men’s breakfast (to support more men to take part)
  • Regular events and opportunities that reflect what people are interested in, getting together with others around a shared interest or trying something new together
  • Organised visits for example a meal at a local restaurant or a theatre trip
  • Taster sessions – for people to try new hobbies, eg water colouring, brush calligraphy, learning an instrument
  • Social action sessions – ways to contribute, for example, supporting the Little Free Library or supporting a local initiative to help people get more active
  • Short term projects – for example a term of working in a school to listen to children reading, co-creating local history project with local artists
  • Opportunities for people to share their time and interests through our Two Hour Club

As well as our local face to face events, we also have a range of online activities through our Circles Connected Facebook Group.

Small Sparks

With a small pot of money we want to support people with their great ideas to make a difference in thier local community. £250 can help a great idea become a reality, bring people together and support further ripples of connection.

Learn more

Business 100

We want to re-imagine the relationship between business and charities. We want to go beyond traditional approaches to Corporate Social Responsibility and see businesses investing in charities to develop reciprocal relationships with each other and support the wellbeing of their employees.

Learn more

Two Hour Club

We want to rethink volunteering as a way of investing in your own wellbeing by giving a couple of hours of your time each month to share a hobby or skill! As part of the Two Hour Club, local people come together each month, to enjoy the things that matter to them. 

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Ashton Circle, Knit and Natter

Audrey has lived in Ashton all of her life, and spent most of her time with her husband, children and grandchildren. Her children and grandchildren recently moved away, and she lost her husband a few years ago. When he passed away, Audrey was at a loss on how to spend her time, and got into a rut of staying home watching the TV and scrolling on her phone. Audrey had seen on Facebook that Ashton Circle had started hosting a knit & natter group with a group of ladies who loved to knit.

Years ago, Audrey would knit jumpers and hats for her children and grandchildren, but she hadn’t picked up her needles in a long time! She decided to take the leap and message the Ashton Circle page through facebook. I introduced myself, and shared the details of the knit and natter with her, inviting her to come along.

Sure enough, the next week Audrey came along to the knit and natter and was met at the door by myself. I introduced her to the other knitters, and grabbed her a cuppa. Before long, she was chatting away with our other knitters, and offering help to the other ladies at the group who were new to knitting!

Audrey rekindled her love for knitting, contributed to our goal of knitting scarves for the local homeless charity and made some new friends along the way! She continued her knitting through the pandemic, and is now looking forward to returning to our Knit & Natter sessions as a Two Hour Club member, sharing her knitting expertise with new knitters.