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"It's the way out of loneliness" - a life line to support our Craft Cafe Members

We know that the COVID-19 outbreak has changed the way we all live, work and play and that this is a challenging and worrying time for many. In response, and in line with government updates, we have changed the way we work; ensuring we are still doing everything we can to support those we work with. Whilst we are not able to offer face-to-face programmes, we are offering virtual sessions to some of our groups as well as providing packs, support and guidance for all.

Craft Cafe Govan is an amazing programme for over 60 year old's in the Govan area. For many it is a life line and even more so in the current circumstances we find ourselves facing. In order to protect the safety of our members, we unfortunately had to stop our Craft Cafe sessions.

However, we started working with each individual to provide them with monthly activity bags shaped to their interests. This is supported by regular online craft/arts activities; the provision of creative and exercise focused activities newsletters/booklets; and regular phone calls and welfare check-ins.

It was important to Impact Arts to continue the contact with the Craft Cafe members as we are aware how important it is in their lives and the value of creative activities in helping to tackle social issues that many older people face. We were delighted when we were awarded a grant from the Response, Recovery and Resilience Fund to help us keep up the support.

Charlotte Craig, lead tutor said; "During this lock-down period older people in particular can feel more isolated and anxious, and there is a real worry of the repercussions on well-being. The Craft Café is all about older people getting together, having fun and being creative - we really want to keep some of that momentum going."

Last week the members received their first newsletter. With the team managing to get some great contributions from members, including practising relaxing breathing techniques, a 'Granarky' poem and a little peek into what some of the members have been making at home. This was accompanied by a postcard project, where the members have been given a blank, stamped postcard to draw a picture and write a message for another member and Impact Arts will post the postcard to another member of Craft Cafe.

We can't wait to see what the members come up and and we heave already started planning the next newsletter...watch this space!

Download a copy of the first Craft Newsletter here and get involved in some of the creative activities yourself.

If you are interested in finding out more about Craft Cafe why not watch this very poignant and powerful video of special Craft Cafe Govan and its members, made by Reel People.

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The team at Impact Arts work hard to secure over £1.5m of funding per year to provide life changing creative experiences for more than 5000 people.

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