To mark Mental Health Awareness Week (14-20 May) we talk to the Woolly Wellbeing Craft Club
Craft Club is our national campaign that champions craft groups in schools, galleries, libraries and anywhere else you can bring people together to share craft skills.
We talk to Sally who runs the weekly Woolly Wellbeing craft club in Liverpool about the positive impact this club has on its members' general wellbeing.
Tell us a little about your craft club - where and how often do you meet?
Woolly Wellbeing group is a weekly group that takes place at a family arts cafe. We focus on woolly crafts, mainly knitting and crochet in the group; I also welcome newbie knitters and get them started.
Who attends your craft club?
The group is attended by a mix of ladies (still awaiting our first male attendee) of all ages many of whom have mental health and physical health issues, carers looking for a break and some who just want a bit of company or a change of pace from a busy life. During school holidays attendees can bring kids age 7+ to join us and we teach them to knit or make pom-poms.
How does your club focus on wellbeing?
I encourage conversations making sure everyone is included to the level they would like and there is usually lots of laughter. Because we have a knitting/crochet focus there is a common interest to help start any conversations. I provide patterns for the attendees to get involved with but often they choose to do their own thing and that’s fine too.
What members say about Woolly Wellbeing:
“With suffering from social anxiety it’s really the only place I go.”
(Member with social anxiety and depression)
“It helps me socialise in a friendly non-threatening environment.”
(Full time carer)
“Joining the woolly group has literally saved my life and allowed me to gain a sense of purpose and belonging.”
(Member with borderline personality disorder and depression)
“I’ve made some wonderful new friends who have helped me to take my mind off things for a while.”
If you are looking to unwind and de-stress at home, why not try this paper shoes tutorial by maker Jennifer Collier.