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.

Summer Timetable 2022

HOLIDAYS: There is no Mindful Art Club from Monday 8th August until Friday 19th August. 

These are the free sessions we are running in August, when we are not on holiday: 

Monday 1st and 22nd, 1pm Sunflower Women’s Centre. Booking essential.
Thursday 4th, 25th, 12.00pm The London Inn, Plympton. No need to book.
Friday 5th, 1pm Moments Cafe, New George Street. Booking essential.

These groups are free thanks to our funders and partners; Trevi Sparks Fund, Livewell Foundation, The London Inn, and Moments Cafe and Memory Matters Hub. All groups will be back up and running as normal on 1st September.

Read more about how to book your place at Mindful Art Club.

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: Recovery Art Club

Has your drinking started to worry you?

Is using drugs causing problems in your life?

Are you already in recovery but want to connect with others?

Recovery Art Club is a free, weekly group at Moments Cafe in Plymouth city centre. The group is upstairs in the Arthur Read room and will be running for six months.

Starts: Tuesday 6th September 2022, 1.30pm – 3.00pm

Moments Café, 69a New George Street, Plymouth, PL1 1RJ

Even if you can’t decide whether you have a problem or not, you are welcome to come along. There is no art experience required! Friendly and informal. Just grab a coffee and join in.

Connect with others and discover new ways of practising self-care through easy art and mindfulness exercises. Practice being here in the present moment, and accept where you are right now, without self-judgement. We will also be inviting some inspiring guest speakers to these groups, to talk about addiction and recovery.

The group is hosted by Emma Sprawson and Peggy Melmoth. They are the founders of Mindful Art Club, and have a background of working for many years in addiction treatment centres in Plymouth.

Places are free thanks to funding from an OPCC Community Grant from Devon Community Foundation, but booking is essential as we expect this group to be popular.

Mindful Art Session

We start with a brief chat about how everyone is feeling, then a short guided mindfulness session, followed by a simple art activity that anyone can do. Our mission is to make mindfulness more fun! We’re not teaching art techniques, we’re just here to play.

Places are limited, so if you cannot attend please let us know and we can offer your place to someone else. Book now.

Not ready for this group yet? Join our mailing list to hear about other free events.

Livewell Fund Boosts Mental Health

Thanks to Livewell funding we have been running a Mindful Art Club in Plympton for three months.

We share images on our Facebook page each week, to show how the group is going. (We secure written permission from our service users before posting pictures to social media.)

“Finally! A place where you can truly be yourself, be heard and supported. I feel so included and seen and it has given me real confidence in life. I love the creativity, the chats, the laughs and just this feeling I am totally welcome. I really look forward to Thursday mornings”.

Plympton group participant

Our aim is to improve people’s wellbeing and mental health and reduce social isolation. We give people a space to share their feelings, learn different mindfulness techniques for self-care, be creative in a group, relax and chat. We supply all art materials and suggest a different art project each week.

“I really enjoy the mindful group. Meeting lovely likeminded people who don’t judge you. This group is helping me a lot.”

Plympton group participant

Since the project started in April we have served 14 beneficiaries, who attend regularly. We have hosted a group every week, except for the Jubilee bank holiday Thursday.

“The mindful body scan and tongue drum really helped me focus on my breathing and my body. It really relaxed me and made me feel calmer.”

Plympton group participant

We have collected written and verbal feedback to measure how we have reduced social isolation, built self-esteem, and improved mental health. We collect comments in a comments and suggestion book.

We also evaluated our client’s wellbeing at the beginning of the project using the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale (WEMWBS).

Si Parnham works for Heads Count at Colebrook SW, a user led network for people who access mental health services, carers and everyone with experience of or affected by mental health matters in and around the city of Plymouth. Visiting our Plympton group he said,

“A room full of joy, and people feeling safe and comfortable to talk about how their lives are. Really worthwhile visit and an excellent community lead group.”

Si Parnham, Heads Count

Join us on Thursdays at 11.00am at The London Inn, Church Road, Plympton.

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.

Two Free Art Sessions This Saturday

The village of Plympton St Maurice is getting ready for the return of our popular midsummer festival on Saturday 18th June. Peggy, and volunteers Joanna and Maria, will be hosting a Mindful Art Club stall at the Lamb Feast, so come along and have a chat, have a go at some art, and see the art that has been created in our weekly groups at The Brook Inn, Plympton. You can also find out about our free art groups, evening courses, retreats and staff wellbeing sessions.

Alternatively, come and meet Lee and Emma who are offering a zen doodles workshop at Plymouth Wellness Fair on 18th June. Come and join in with this free mindful art session to see for yourself how it can really lift your mood. There is no artistic talent required! You can also hear special guest experts deliver presentations, speak to wellbeing champions and explore the range of stallholders for all things wellness and wellbeing. This is an event for anyone looking to make positive changes to their lives. If you have any questions about mindful art you can chat to Lee and Emma on our stall.

Find out more: Plymouth Wellness Fair

Plymouth Wellness Fair | 18 Jun, 09:30 – 17:00 Devonport, Devonport Guildhall, Ker St, Devonport, Plymouth PL1 4EL

Read more about Plympton St Maurice Lamb Feast: Midsummer Festival

Book your place at the Mindful Art Retreat, held in Plympton St Maurice, Sunday 3rd July.

Come to our free weekly art group, 11.00am on Thursday mornings at The Brook Inn, Plympton.

Plympton Lamb Feast Returns!

The village of Plympton St Maurice is getting ready for the return of our popular midsummer festival on Saturday 18th June. Peggy, and volunteer Joanna, will be hosting a Mindful Art Club stall at the Lamb Feast, so come along and have a chat, have a go at some art, and see the art that has been created in our weekly groups at The Brook Inn, Plympton. You can also find out about our free art groups, evening courses, retreats and staff wellbeing sessions.

The Lamb Feast has been held for hundreds of years on the Castle Green, beside the ruins of the Norman castle. The village will be decorated with bunting, the green will be busy with food, craft, cake and plant stalls, charity stalls, swing boats, vintage cars, a dog show, a tug of war and dance displays. After two years with no festival we can’t wait for it to return!

Read more about what’s on: Midsummer Festival

Book your place at the Mindful Art Retreat, held in Plympton St Maurice, Sunday 3rd July.

Come to our free weekly art group, 11.00am on Thursday mornings at The Brook Inn, Plympton.

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.