Health and wellbeing

Our Museum, Arts and Leisure staff have some great ideas and initiatives to help you at this time.

Virtual ISLAND Arts Centre 

Visit the ISLAND Arts Centre virtually to be inspired and entertained at home. Check out  and it's social media channels for further details.

Become a Virtual Artist in Residence and get your own work featured by submitting any form of artwork to the ISLAND, be it writing, creative or even short film and music.

Simply send your work to or via ISLAND Arts Centre’s social media channels:

Covid-19 and Me

What is your experience of the current Coronavirus pandemic? How do you feel? What stories or lessons do you think future generations should take from the pandemic? A hundred years from now people will want to know what happened, how we experienced and dealt with the pandemic. Share your story by visiting:

Virtual Museum

The Irish Linen Centre & Lisburn Museum’s ‘Virtual Museum’ features free worksheets and resources for children, online tours, local history and the opportunity to view some of the Museum’s rich collections. The Virtual Museum can be found at:

Marie Curie

Marie Curie has recently expanded its Information & Support service to support people who are terminally ill & those who have recently lost a loved one, who will be particularly impacted by the Covid-19 crisis.

Because they know people need information around death and dying at this time more than ever, the Marie Curie support line (0800 090 2309) has extended its opening hours to be open seven days a week. They also have a check-in and chat service running, where people can be befriended by one of our volunteers, this is for shielded and vulnerable people and for those caring for them.

Find out more online at


The NSPCC has created an online Hub providing advice and support for parents and carers during the coronavirus outbreak. Content includes: information on keeping children safe from abuse; tips and advice to help parents working from home; and ways to talk to a child who is anxious or worried about coronavirus.  Click here to access this information: Coranavirus: advice and support for parents and carers

PlayBoard NI

PlayBoard NI recently produced a new information sheet, Coronavirus: Play Matters more than it ever did, designed in cooperation with the Department of Education’s Play Matters project to assist teachers, playworkers, parents and those offering care to children in these challenging times, to consider how they might provide quality play opportunities and experiences. To download click here 

During this current situation we are sharing a daily play at home idea for children and young people on our Facebook and twitter pages, which are collated at to inspire parents and those caring for children. Ideas include shadow drawings, learn how to juggle, make slime, make playdough and eco activities.

The Northern Ireland branch of the International Play Association (IPA NI) have produced a new information sheet, Message for Parents – Play is the Way which highlights the importance of play and offers advice. Download by clicking here 

Supporting you to support others during COVID-19 

New interim guidelines and E-Learning module unveiled by HSCNI in collaboration with the Red Cross, the Red Crescent and NHS Education Scotland

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and Red Cross advise that people are more likely to be able to psychologically cope with and recover from ongoing crises like COVID-19 if they can:

  • Feel safe, connected to others, calm and hopeful;
  • Have access to social, physical and emotional support; and
  • Feel able to help themselves, as individuals and communities.

Learning psychological first aid skills and understanding reactions to crisis, empowers helpers to help others and apply the same skills to their own lives

To support our communities, volunteers and frontline workers interim guidelines and a short E-Learning module on Psychological First Aid are available at for those who are not members of the HSC Learning Centre. 

The Resources and E-Learning Webinar will help individuals and teams help people they are in contact with both during and after the COVID-19 pandemic by:

  • Addressing basic needs and concerns and providing practical support
  • Connecting them to information, services and social supports
  • Offering comfort and helping them to feel calm
  • Reducing distress and fostering adaptive coping
  • Protecting them from further harm


Whether you are a Vitality member or not, staying active throughout this uncertain time can not only continue to improve your overall health and fitness, reducing your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, but it is also important to help to reduce feelings of anxiety, depression and prevent other mental health problems.

Check out our Vitality home workouts which include a variety of high and low impact exercises, demonstrations and stretches to boost your mental and physical well-being on our Lagan Valley LeisurePlex Facebook page

Videos will include a variety of high and low impact exercises, demonstrations and stretches to boost your mental and physical well-being.

Top tips for working out at home!

  • Try and stick to a schedule of getting up and moving at the same time everyday
  • Make sure you have a cleared area and enough space for your workout before you begin
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Include a warm up and cool down for each session

We are also working closely with partner organisations to share specific advice and support to some of the more vulnerable in our community.

MacMillan Cancer

MacMillan Move More coordinators are sharing online advice and videos to service users via the Move More NI Facebook page .

Healthwise Scheme

Our Healthwise Coordinator will be sharing specific exercise classes aimed at those currently on or having gone through the Healthwise scheme. Videos will be posted on the Vitality Lisburn Castlereagh Facebook page

Stress Control

A new online programme of stress control classes has been developed to support people during the response to coronavirus (COVID-19), recognising the need to stay at home, while also recognising the impact that the pandemic and changes to our lifestyles is having on mental health. The free online stress control classes are being supported by the Department of Health, Health and Social Care Board, Health and Social Care Trusts and Public Health Agency and are aimed at supporting people’s mental wellbeing at this time of massive uncertainty.

The classes, presented by Dr Jim White, a clinical psychologist, will be available at  Simply click on the subscribe button and you will be kept up to date with the latest videos when logged in to YouTube.  The classes can be watched either in the afternoon or evening and each class lasts for one and a half hours.

These sessions are effective in helping to reduce symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression. Topics covered include an overview of what stress is, controlling your body, your thoughts, controlling your actions,  techniques to get a good night’s sleep. Stress control is a class, not ‘group therapy’. People can take part in the class from the privacy of their own home.