Edition 002 - 11 May 2017
Welcome to the second edition of THE GOOD TIMES, Well Read’s regular round-up of news and commentary for people working in the charity and voluntary sector, as well as where the Third Sector intersects with health and wellbeing, and the arts.

Our focus is on celebrating good things happening in Derbyshire, but also highlighting learning from further afield. We’ll scan the media and keep our ears to the ground for the latest commentary on topics ranging from fundraising campaigns and development opportunities, as well as featuring the odd tidbit which made us smile.

We’d love to hear from you if have any news you’d like to submit. Please email

Please share THE GOOD TIMES with anyone you think may be interested.
Left to right: Leann, Sara and Adrienne Lakin

Fibro campaign raises awareness of hidden illness

A family of fibromyalgia sufferers in Chesterfield has bought the debilitating effects of this little-known health condition under the spotlight through their campaigning efforts.

Sisters Adrienne, Leann and Sara Lakin, with the backing of local MP, Toby Perkins, have attracted over 27,000 signatures on their Petition which means that parliament must review classifying the disorder as a disability.

Adrienne had to give up work in October 2016 due to the symptoms of this invisible condition, namely chronic fatigue, restless leg syndrome leading to insomnia, pain around the body and an inability to concentrate - otherwise known as ‘fibro fog’. As the condition isn’t classified as a disability, Adrienne has had to get by on employment and support allowance (esa)  – although she’s unfit to work. Adrienne explained: “If fibro were classed as a disability, employers would have to be flexible and we would get the same financial support as any other disabled person.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the support we’ve received. It just goes to show how many people have been suffering in silence.”

St Michael All Angels church, Brimington, Chesterfield will be lit up in purple and hosting a fundraising event on 12 May - with refreshments and a tombola in support of Fybromyalgia Awareness Day. Please go along to show your support and also sign the Lakin’s petition here.

Coffee and hand-outs at a support group.

Support group helping people with
long-term conditions

People across Derbyshire with a long-term condition are benefiting from a programme which is helping them to self-manage their illness more effectively and live a fuller life. The Living with a Long-Term Condition Programme is funded by  Derbyshire County Council in partnership with Citizens Advice, South Derbyshire. The six-week course (delivered one day a week for 2.5 hours) aims to support people with a long- term health or medical condition deal with pain, fatigue, stress and depression, as well as provide a forum to meet with others and share experiences. Topics covered include healthy eating, relaxation, appropriate physical exercise, pacing yourself, and communicating with friends, family and health professionals.  

The programme is delivered by two volunteer tutors who themselves live with long-term conditions and can give you practical advice based on their own life experience. Leonie Martin, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2000, is a volunteer tutor on the Chesterfield group.

“Although the health professionals gave me all the medical advice, I still felt like I was quite alone coming to terms with the conditions and its side effects. Many people don’t want to burden their families with their concerns, and GPs simply don’t have the time, so this course is a real source of practical and emotional support.”

The programme, which launched in September 2016, has so far supported more than 180 people across the county. Co-ordinator Karen Ziglam said: “The feedback has been great. People have said that the programme has really helped them to feel more positively about life, as well as advising on practical changes they can make to improve their wellbeing.”

Barbara Saunt from Bolsover, was diagnosed with non epileptic seizures in 2014 and has been attending the programme in Chesterfield. She said: “The group has provided me with practical advice, for example how to control my breathing to stay calm. I've also learnt a lot about other long-term conditions and sharing experiences with others has made me feel less alone.”

Courses are due to start in Ilkeston later this month, and in Matlock, Swadlincote and Eckington in June (limited places). Other courses will commence in September in Belper, Chesterfield, Glossop, Clowne, Long Eaton, Ashbourne and Swadlincote. Contact Karen Ziglam for further information or to reserve a space on a future course via: or Tel: 01283 210107. 
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Top tips for getting in the press
If you want to get your organisation into the media, it’s important to understand what journalists and editors are looking for. Great pictures and linking your story to a topical issue are just some of the ways you can get your press release noticed.

If you’d like a steer on how to draft a press release which won’t immediately be consigned to ‘trash’ check out my top tips for writing a press releases that cuts the mustard.

Image: Kate Dawson
Mobile giving: a trend not to be ignored

If your charity isn’t yet set up for mobile donations you might be missing a trick. Research has revealed that young people don’t just see their mobiles as a tool for selfies and Snapchat. According to a survey by social payment app Moneymailme 72% of 18-25 year olds would make payments to a charity or cause via their mobile if given the chance.

This younger age group predict that money will become obsolete within 20 years. Furthermore, an astonishing 17% of those surveyed have a direct debit set up with charities of their choice and 12% regularly donate to disaster relief funds online. Read more on Charity Digital News
News of Prince Philip's retirement
- the good, the bad and the ugly

Whether you’re in favour of the Royal family or not, the news of Prince Philip's retirement did provide an opportunity to reflect on the tremendous support he has given to numerous charities over the years (he has been patron, president or member of over 700 charities) including Patron of Muscular Dystrophy UK and WWF UK for more than 50 years. Not forgetting the difference his inspiring Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme has made to millions of young people since he founded it in 1956.

So, credit where credit’s due... but please forgive us for enjoying a little mirth at the expense of His Royal Highness with this round up of classic gaffes, courtesy of the Sun
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