Residents in Sheffield have been given a boost by free community sports sessions.

SIV is providing free sports sessions – including boxing – at ShipShape Health & Wellbeing Centre, in Sharrow, as part of an initiative to increase sport and physical exercise in the local community.

The project has been designed to support people with mental health or drug and alcohol misuse issues – however, all members of the public are welcome. The centre is run by a workers’ co-operative for the local community which is partly funded by Sheffield City Council Community Well-being Programme.

The sessions are delivered by a qualified instructor who has a background in helping people manage long-term conditions through physical activity.

SIV is part of the not-for-profit Sheffield City Trust (SCT) whose primary objective is to improve the health and wellbeing of Sheffield people by providing facilities for sport and leisure activities.

The Ship Shape project is linked to SIV’s Exercise Referral Scheme, which offers recovery and rehabilitation to people suffering from chronic conditions. SIV works in partnership with community organisations across Sheffield to promote physical activity and healthier lifestyles.

One participant in the Ship Shape project, Adam Jefferies, who is originally from Mansfield, said: “ShipShape has helped me in so many ways. It’s improved my mental health and wellbeing, and my confidence, which in turn helps my physical health.

“I left school with no qualifications and had issues with drugs, but this project has helped me no-end because at first I felt better, getting out and about, and from there it all just snowballed.

“I first heard about the project from friends who work at the ShipShape centre and got involved –and I’ve never looked back. It’s been fantastic for me in every way.

“It’s not about being an elite sportsperson and it’s not about how good you are. It’s about benefitting you both physically and mentally, which it has without doubt done for me.”

Phil Eddyshaw, Health Worker said: “The buzz we get from the exercise and letting off some steam has got to be good for us.

“Within the group there are people who have had issues in the past with drugs and drink misuse, and problems with mental health, but we are aiming the sessions at anybody who wants to get fitter.

“We’re extremely grateful for SIV’s help with this – it’s thanks to the free sessions that we’ve been able to put on this new activity. Hopefully it can continue having such an impact on the community.”

Councillor Mazher Iqbal, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Equality said: “It is no secret that exercise is the key to being healthy, and that doesn’t just mean physically – it can help with mental health too.

“This is a great initiative and one which I have no doubt will help improve the health and wellbeing of those who take part. Hopefully this will give people the boost they need to help turn their lives around and make 2016 a year of positive change for them.”

For more information on ShipShape, or to get involved with the project, contact Phil Eddyshaw on 07757634967. For more information about SIV, visit and to find out more about SIV’s Exercise Referral Scheme, call 0114 257 4426.

Released on behalf of The SCT group by HR Media Ltd. For more information contact Natalie Harrison, Hannah Johnson or Phil Hammond at HR Media on 0114 252 7772 or 0114 252 7776 or 0114 252 7771 or email or