Since the 2020 global pandemic, people across London and beyond have recognised the power of community. 

At Groundwork London, we support projects that help improve people’s prospects, through health, greener living, employment and community building. With staff demonstrating extensive support to beneficiaries in so many vacations, from mental health support and grant consultancy and delivery, to community garden sessions and wellbeing walks, it’s an honour and a privilege to share when their achievements’ are formally rewarded.

Social prescribing support’s people to have more control over their own physical and mental health and in a way that suits them and aligns with what they enjoy. It promotes patient-centred care supporting Londoners in making decisions about their own wellbeing with a focus on matters to them.

Groundwork London’s partnership with the Hounslow Consortium of GP’s began Social Prescribing in 2019, initially with one link worker in each Primary Care Network (PCN’s). The service has since grown to a team of 20 Link Workers deployed in Hounslow GP’s practice supporting over 4000 patients in 2023/2024 across the five Primary Care Networks (PCN’s) in Hounslow; Hounslow Health, Chiswick, Brentworth, Feltham and Bedfont and Great West Road.

Social Prescribing Link Worker of the Year

The National Association for Link Workers (NALW) Awards this year were held at the 6th Annual Social Prescribing Link worker conference in Birmingham 23-24th May 2024. The event and awards highlight the transformative impact of social prescribing link workers and their essential role in revolutionising health and care. 

The Award for Social Prescribing Link Worker of the Year award celebrates an exemplary professional who embodies excellence in their practice by surpassing daily expectations, demonstrating transformative leadership, overcoming significant challenges, and showcasing tangible evidence of their impact in transforming healthcare for all. 

This year’s winner was our very own Gosia Chmielewska!

Gosia joined the Groundwork London Social Prescribing team in 2022 and is the Social Prescribing Team Lead for the Great West Road PCN, in London Borough of Hounslw. Over the last year, Gosia achieved beyond the scope of her job role by achieving her targets as Social Prescriber, completing an accredited NHS  Multi-Professional Educator Course. She also advocated on behalf of other social prescribers in the NALW membership. Additionally, she is also an Ambassador for the Personalised Care Institute. Her Groundwork London PCN voted for her to be shortlisted in 2023.

In accepting her award, Gosia spoke with a camaraderie that is unique to our Social Prescribing Link Workers, and their ‘Together we are Stronger’ approach which is infectious and incredibly inspiring.

Working with so many patients has been a real privilege. Helping them navigate and access resources to enhance their wellbeing has been rewarding, and they have taught me so much in return. This award reflects our collective efforts to foster health, connection, and resilience. Together, we can continue to build more equal, happier and healthier future for all.

This award is as much yours as it is mine!

Groundwork London Social Prescribing Team Lead Link Worker Gosia Chmielewska receiving the National Association for Link Workers Social Prescribing Link Worker of the Year Award in May 2024

Groundwork London’s Social Prescribing programme in a unique local partnership with the Hounslow Consortium within the NHS and is shaping and supporting the integration of health, social care and community organisation in Hounslow.

It Takes a Village

“If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

Social prescribing Link Workers focus on prevention and intervention, tackling issues such as loneliness, isolation, and stress from debt or housing problems, which can contribute to health issues. They connect people to non-medical support to address these and other unmet needs, supporting individuals of all accessibility requirements in a personalised way, such as:

  • helping someone who is isolated to join a befriending group, an art class or a community gardening project, based on what matters to them; 
  • connecting someone struggling with financial stress to a service that helps with managing debt or claiming benefits; 
  • working with someone with high blood pressure to take up a form of exercise that they’re comfortable with. 

“This service has really made a difference in my life, as the strain of day-to-day living sometimes impacts my wellbeing. It is great to have a service that understands my needs and supports me in finding the right approach.” Social Prescribing Beneficiary, 2023

Attendees at the 2024 National Association for Link Workers Awards

Groundwork London has a long history of delivering community-centred projects focused on health, wellbeing, and environmental sustainability in Hounslow. The opportunity to support the national roll out of social prescribing in partnership with the Hounslow Consortium over the last five years has enabled us to provide a person-centred service together which helps patients tackle a wide range of issues, from physical and mental wellbeing to social isolation. Through an holistic approach working within GP practices and community outreach, we aim to build healthier, more connected, and more resilient individuals and communities in Hounslow. 

We are delighted that Gosia has been recognised nationally for excellence in social prescribing, her award reflects both her achievements and that of the team, the service and the Hounslow Consortium partnership.’’ – Katrina Baker, Director, Communities and Environmental Services 

During an evolution of equality and diversity at a crucial time, when the impact of the cost of living crisis draws attention to the significant health inequalities across the city, we are grateful to groups and individuals like our Social Prescribing Link Workers who are enabling and empowering Londoners with care, encouragement and determination.

Discover  the many ways that we support and improve the lives of communities in London and the places they live on our website: