Cllr Chaz Singh Supports Art Group

This week we had a great meeting with hardworking Independent Councillor Chaz Singh, Drake ward, who has awarded us some funding to help us continue our weekly mindful art group at Moments Café, in the centre of Plymouth. Plymouth councillors each have an annual grant allocation to assist not for profit groups and organisations in the city.

Moments Café is a social enterprise based in New George Street. It offers a safe environment for people to meet, eat and socialise and all of their profits go towards Memory Matters, supporting local people living with dementia.

Our Friday afternoon group meets upstairs in the Arthur Read room, and offers a place to connect, chat, practice mindfulness and do a simple art project. All art materials are provided and the group has two facilitators. Anyone is welcome to attend, and the session boosts mental health and reduces social isolation.

We are meeting 1.00pm this Friday 5th August, then taking three weeks holiday, and returning on 2nd September. This is a very popular group so we ask people to book a place here: Mindful Art at Moments (If you find you are no longer able to attend please cancel your booking so that your place can be offered to somebody else.)

We would like to express our warmest wishes and thanks to Councillor Chaz Singh for his ongoing support of our work in Drake ward.

Art Club Meets Uni Researchers

Friday 8th July was our first co-design meeting with our art group participants and the research team, brainstorming what we’d like to measure and how to measure it.

We were given funding from the University of Plymouth’s Get Involved Awards to research and measure our impact. An Action Based Evaluation of Mindful Art Club (MAC) in Plymouth is being conducted by Dr Helen Lloyd, Emma Sprawson, and Peggy Melmoth, with two researchers; Abbie Scott and Rachel Mullee.

Read more: New Collaboration With Plymouth University will Measure the Difference we Make

New Collaboration With Plymouth University will Measure the Difference we Make

We have recently been awarded funding from the University of Plymouth’s Get Involved Awards to research and measure our impact. An Action Based Evaluation of Mindful Art Club (MAC) in Plymouth will be conducted by Dr Helen Lloyd, Emma Sprawson, and Peggy Melmoth, with two researchers; Abbie Scott and Rachel Mullee.

The awards were launched this year by the University’s Research and Innovation team – designed to bring communities and researchers together to find sustainable solutions to local problems. 

Research will be conducted from June to December 2022, with case studies produced to share the learning of the research and its impact for the community. A gala ceremony will then follow at the University on 7th December. 

We will be involving our service users, volunteers and the organisations that commission us, in the process of designing the research project.

Read more: Plymouth University Get Involved Awards

Want to know what we find out? Follow our progress by signing up to our monthly newsletter.

Luke Pollard MP Supports Our Funding Bid

We recently met with Luke Pollard, Labour and Co-operative MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, who was very supportive of the work we are doing in the Plymouth community. He was kind enough to write this supporting letter which may help us to receive further funding.

Mindful Art Club is a professional, and well-known organisation that has developed many minds for the better. I have complete faith that any grant money requested will be well utilised for the benefit of the area and assisting greatly in personal development and
wellbeing.

Luke Pollard, MP

It was a pleasure to meet with Luke, who shared his thoughts on how we could best secure more funding and continue to serve the Plymouth community.

Livewell Funds Plympton Art Club

We are delighted to have received funding from The Livewell Foundation to run a mindful art club in Plympton for six months. The Livewell Foundation’s mission is to support projects and initiatives that will help improve health and wellbeing, prevent ill health or reduce social isolation within Plymouth and South West Devon.  Livewell Southwest is an independent social enterprise providing integrated health and social care services for people across Plymouth, South Hams and West Devon.

Our Plympton group meets weekly at The Brook Inn, Longbrook Street at 11am on Thursdays and offers coffee, creativity and company to improve mental health and reduce social isolation in Plympton.

Join our mailing list to find out what other free and low cost events we offer around Plymouth.

Plympton Art Course Improves Mental Health

We recently offered a six week course at Plympton Guildhall, called ‘Doodle Your Recovery’ – thanks to funding from Devon Recovery Learning Community.

Initial feedback indicates that one hundred percent of the participants enjoyed the course. When asked what they had learned on the course people wrote:

  • To relax and just let creativity flow
  • Mindfulness
  • To breathe better
  • Empathy
  • To give time to myself
  • Communication
  • How to think of myself as well as others
  • To not dwell on problems so much
  • To express feelings through art
  • That I am not alone and it’s OK to feel how I feel

Some suggestions to make the course better included:

  • Maybe more meditation
  • Qi Gong
  • Name badges
  • Increase it to two hours, with a break

One hundred percent of survey respondents said they would recommend the course to other people.

If you would like to try using creativity to improve your mental health we will be at The Brook Inn, 33 Longbrook Street, Plympton, PL7 1NJ from Thursday 3rd March 2022.

Unique Corporate Opportunity

As a small grass roots community group, over the past two years we have consistently offered mental health support and social connection to the Plymouth community during these unprecedented challenging times.

Our Impact

  • 69% of mindful art course participants said it had helped them with anxiety.
  • 44% said a mindful art course helped them with depression.
  • 40% said it helped them with another mental health issue.
  • 59% said it helped them with loneliness or isolation.
  • Participants also reported being helped with physical health, low self-esteem and other issues not listed in our survey.
  • 66% said they had increased their ability to use mindfulness.
  • 84% said they had increased their ability to use art as a self care practice.

(Source: Collected feedback form responses, accessed 04/02/22)

I enjoy the mindfulness and art. As I do art at home it helps my acute pain. The group makes me feel rested and at ease. Emma, Lee and Peggy are wonderful.

Anonymous participant feedback.

We are grateful to our existing grant funders who share our vision of a world where peer support, mindfulness, creative activities and social connection are easily available in local communities. With their support we have helped hundreds of people since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.

  • We have received funding and support from Devon Mind, The Sunflower Women’s Centre, Comic Relief, Shekinah, The National Lottery Community Fund, High Street Sparks Fund, Devon Recovery Learning Community and Devon Community Foundation.
  • We won a year’s business support from Real Ideas Organisation.
  • We have secured media attention from The Plymouth Herald, The Plymouth Chronicle, BBC Radio Devon, many smaller local community radio stations, and BBC Spotlight News. In the Media.

How You Can Support Us

  • Sponsor a course, a group or a one day retreat
  • Book a staff wellbeing session
  • Donate directly with Paypal
  • Sign up to a regular corporate gift
  • Donate a gift in kind (for example room hire or art materials)
  • Encourage your employees to sign up to a challenge event in aid of Mindful Art Club
  • Organise your own fundraising event such as a bake sale, mufti day or casual Friday – tie it in with a national mental health awareness day

You Will Be Rewarded By

  • Enhancing your brand as socially responsible
  • Securing positive PR
  • Attracting socially conscious customers
  • Showing your employees you appreciate the importance of mental health
  • Making you look more attractive as an employer

If your business is passionate about improving mental health and reducing social isolation then contact us now to discuss a mutually beneficial partnership.

Ask for our brochure to find out more.

New Year, New Courses

How to book your place at Mindful Art Club in 2022

We have three new mindful art groups starting in the new year. We have a number of free places available thanks to our funders and partners, but places are limited, so book now to avoid disappointment.

Mondays 10.00am at Devon Mind in Greenbank: A six week course funded by Devon Mind. Book here.

Mondays 1.00pm at The Sunflower Women’s Centre continues in the New Year. Book your place by phoning the Sunflower 01752 977614.

Thursdays 11.00am at Plympton St Maurice Guildhall: A six week course funded by Devon Recovery Learning Community. Book here.

Fridays 1.00pm at Moments Cafe, 69a New George Street, Plymouth, funded by The High Streets Heritage Action Zone initiative. Book here.

Not ready to come to a group yet? Download some mindful colouring pages to enjoy at home.

‘High Street Sparks’ grant success!

Mindful Art Club has secured a grant of £2,430 to run a community arts project based at Moment’s Café. Workshops will explore the heritage of the city centre’s conservation area and will be free to anyone who is struggling with their mental health.

Read more: https://www.theboxplymouth.com/blog/press-release/high-street-sparks-r1

Send us a message if you would like to put your name down for a free place at this new central Plymouth art group.