We take great pride in consulting with our communities to uncover their needs, so we can plan and deliver arts and wellbeing projects that have a positive impact upon mental and emotional health and wellbeing in general. Below is a selection of our community projects. Thanks to our funders for supporting our communities' creativity and wellbeing.
Funded by The National Lottery Community Fund September 2019 – August 2020
Launched in September 2019, in the prestigious Ballroom at Nottingham’s Council House, our wellbeing project, Making Time, featured monthly talks and participatory arts and wellbeing workshops, all centred around improving women’s physical, mental and emotional health.
This project had a focus on being community-led and our organisation held public consultations with our target groups in a pilot project and also in small in-person meetings. It was clear that women in Nottingham wanted to ‘make time’ for themselves, where they could connect with other women and make new friends. Loneliness was a big factor and we wanted to tackle this issue.
Overloaded daily routines and imbalances between work and home life meant that women were not managing to carve out their own time for important aspects of self-care, such as relaxation, nurturing friendships and learning about important health issues for women (Menopause/hormones/nutrition).
Our first ‘gathering’ welcomed 150 women into the city centre Ballroom, where Tedx Talk Presenter, Sharon Roberts, led an inspiring talk on ways to build confidence in our lives and connect with other women.
Smaller monthly gatherings took place throughout the project and feedback was excellent. Attendees and participants reported a heightened sense of positive mental health and a decrease in feelings of isolation and loneliness.
We grew our network and reputation in Nottingham and received phenomenal feedback on the project’s success.
Funded by The National Lottery Community Fund – July 2020 – June 2021
Alarmed by the rising cases of domestic abuse in the UK throughout the pandemic and the first lockdown, our associate member Dr Sally Olewe-Richards, created a project to support women in Nottingham who were experiencing ‘difficult’ relationships.
Still in its stride, we are welcoming women into our supportive online community, where they can access group chats and 1:1 support services. We are also signposting members to key organisations in Nottingham, such as Women’s Aid and Equation (Link to each of these websites).
We have 150 women in our online community and new friendships and support networks have been formed. Weekly workshops take place in the group as ‘live’ posts and also on the platform, Zoom. Yoga, dance and mediation workshops are all attended by our group and are having a positive impact on women experiencing difficult relationships during Covid-19.
VOICES OF IDENTITY
Funded by Arts Council England (January – August 2021)
Our arts and wellbeing project, Voices of Identity, is a multidisciplinary exploration of personal stories & lived experiences through the creative arts & self-exploration. Combining percussion, dance and drama, participants will be stimulated by these art forms to share aspects of their own ‘identities’.
A fantastic artistic team is leading this project, stemming from many countries and cultures – Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, India, Brazil, Jamaica, Portugal and England.
Into the project we are welcoming:
Tatiana Woolley – Brazilian Folk Dances (exploring cultural identities)
Janet Rose – North African and Middle Eastern Dances (exploring body confidence/ageing)
Ines Sampaio Figueirdo – Drama workshops – Voice work, acting skills, character development, monologies and spoken word
Asif Qu – Frame drumming and Middle Eastern Percussion (exploring the ancient art of frame drumming and its feminine origins)
Rastarella Falade – Drama-based self-exploratory workshops, online community leader and final performance compere
Jude Winwood – Project coordinator and support artist for percussion workshops
For details on all free to access workshops for Voices of Identity, join our Facebook group ( Voices of Identity (When Women Gather).
You can also find out more about workshops in our ‘Events’ section. Events are mostly taking place on Zoom and as ‘lives’ in our Facebook group. There’s no need to register and no previous music, dance or drama experience is needed to take part.
Helping us to leave a creative and cultural legacy of Voices of Identity are local film makers, Studio Softbox,
Studio Softbox Photography + Video) who’ll be recording our performances at Nottingham Playhouse later on in the year (Covid permitting!)
We’re excited to be pioneering this project exploring identity and women through the arts. Be sure to follow our Facebook page to keep up to date with our activities in the community.
RESET & RECONNECT
Online workshops for women in Nottingham, supported by Groundwork UK and Comic Relief.