People in Gloucester and the Forest of Dean who live with a long-term condition can now join the new Live Better to Feel Better programme, where they can learn useful skills to help build confidence and improve their health.

The programme offers participants an opportunity to meet others in a similar situation and talk about some of the common challenges they face and ways to manage their condition.

They can learn how to use simple techniques such as controlled breathing and other relaxation approaches to help them sleep better or manage a low mood. There is also advice about how to get the best from the professional support that is available.

The programme is free, and is provided by Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust. It takes place over five sessions run by skilled staff and trained volunteers who really understand the challenges and feelings involved as they have long-term conditions themselves.

It will be available across the county from September this year. It is anticipated around 400 people will join the programme in 2018/19.