The Stepping Stones project is a partnership project between Stafford Borough Council and Stafford and Rural Homes with funding provided by The National Lottery Community Fund.
The aim of Stepping Stones is to help isolated individuals engage locally and increase social interaction. The original project design set out to do this by working in an ‘Asset Based Community Development’ approach to increase accessibility to existing activities through extending and developing the provision of Community and Volunteer transport schemes and by looking to introduce walking buses across Stafford Borough linking it in closely to BeConnected activities, run as part of another project funded by The National Lottery Community Fund.
In early 2020 the UK was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and a state of crisis emerged. In line with central government guidance, all activities which required groups from different households to meet were suspended from operating in their usual manner and strict physical distancing rules have been in place since March 2020.
Since then the Stepping Stones project has been redesigned in line with central government guidance around safe social distancing. The aim is to now help isolated individuals engage locally and increase social interaction with the creation of local doorstep walks.
Doorstep Walks help the 'walker' to explore and take notice of interesting features in their neighbourhood whilst being active and pursuing healthier lifestyles. The walks aim to be a stepping stone towards building walker confidence, generating discussion and interaction around a common interest and raising ambition for participation in group activities in the future.
For more information about this project please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01785 619675.