What’s Shift all about you might be wondering? Well, make yourself comfortable and let us paint a picture of our world….
Shift started out life as Community Sports Trust, a Community Interest Company which was born back in 2008. The vision was a world where everyone is part of a vibrant, physically active community.
That vision remains the same today. But times have changed quite a bit since then and now our work is about so much more than just sport. So we thought it was time to give ourselves a facelift – and transform ourselves into Shift.
What’s the mission?
Our mission is to establish meaningful relationships within communities to build trust and create a magical spark which helps to transform the lives of the people around us. This requires thinking outside the box to push beyond our previous boundaries and find out what connects people, inspires them to move and keeps people exercising.
We’ve always been about people and helping others to enjoy being active as part of their everyday lives. The change to this new world will take time – not short projects, quick wins or fast metrics. A vibrant community isn’t a new fad; it’s built on a decision by individuals to change. You won’t see that big change tomorrow or even next week. It’s a long-term mental and physical transformation, which depends on personal experiences and achievements.
But for people to break out of poor habits, intimacy needs to be obtained. Then, and only then, can real transformation take place. One-to-one relationships need to be formed. Trust needs to be built. Concerns need to be alleviated. Solutions have to be tailored and those influencing need to be part of them – speaking with and not to people. Active communities don’t just mean going to the gym or going for a run; it can be whatever people want it to be – on their terms, with no goal too small or too big. But this is all built on those strong close relationships.
Why’s it so important?
A recent study by The Co-op and British Red Cross revealed more than nine million adults in the UK are either always or often lonely. Further research commissioned by the Eden Project initiative (The Big Lunch) found disconnected communities could be costing the UK economy £32 billion every year. In the past year, 74% of people have felt so stressed they have been overwhelmed or unable to cope (Mental Health Foundation 2018).
Shifting the way we build active communities to create lasting opportunities and healthy habits can achieve so much more than physical health and wellbeing. Being active in your community or workplace increases social connectivity, promotes a strong sense of belonging and helps to reduce stress too. It promotes all round sustainable health and vitality in a way that little else can.
That’s why we came up with Shift and we’re really excited to launch it. It represents our style of work, ethos and values which are about intimacy and relationships, the power of physical activity and doing things ‘with’ not ‘to’ communities.
In a nutshell it re-energises our passion for transforming lives through physical activity.
Come and join the adventure
If you feel compelled to join the movement, please get in touch. Everyone can contribute – nothing is too small.
Invite change; a walk with a colleague at lunch time, introduce the Daily Mile at your child’s school, start a Jog Derbyshire group or put up a One You poster in your office. And let’s think bigger – cycle lanes, bike loan schemes, showers at the office, time off to volunteer and lead community activity, safe spaces to exercise with family and friends.
Connect with others, enjoy being active, shift together.