In April 2020, Hull CVS launched a Hull Loneliness Network to address and work toward eradicating loneliness and the long term effects of loneliness within the communities of Hull and surrounding area.

Part of this Network was Sarah Weichardt from the Neighbourhood Network charity and it helped spawn an idea Menopaus’ull – a new network which aims to support women whilst navigating through the menopause.

Sarah explained the journey to the service:

Attending the Loneliness Network reiterated that feeling lonely can effect anyone at any stage of life.  A discussion was held around social isolation and this developed into stories from women feeling alone whilst experiencing symptoms of the menopause.

The conversation continued within other networks, both professionally and personally and from the research the ‘idea’ of Menopaus’ull was founded, along with an opportunity to apply to the Ideas fund to develop the idea further.

The Ideas fund is a grant programme run by the British Science Association and funded by Wellcome, which enables the UK public to develop and try ideas that address problems related to mental well-being.

A unique part of this fund was that the bid was to be in partnership with a research team at the University if Hull.  The team were matched with the Biomechanics department at the University who are researching into the effects on bone health during the menopause.  Menopaus’ull will offer non-medical support with a bone health study taking place.

The project was launched at the end of October and a Facebook Support Group has been setup to help communicate local menopause activities and information Menopaus’ull Support Group | Facebook, plans to host menopause cafes, develop a menopause book library, opportunities to get involved in menopause focused exercise activities/programmes, bespoke bone health exercise programme and be part of a range of workshops delivered by experts within subject fields such as; bone health, signs and symptoms of the menopause, sleep issues to name a few, these are just some of the plans scheduled for the year-long project.

Hull CVS are delighted to see the Loneliness Network helping to develop ideas and meet the needs of local people in addressing loneliness.

For more information, join the ‘Menopaus’ull’ Facebook group or email office@nnetwork.org.uk to register to receive the Menopaus’ull newsletter.