Welcome to 2023!

This is a special year for the Good Mental Health Coop as it’s our 10th anniversary. As with everything else going on though, we know its going to be a tough year to get through. Our priority is to continue to build opportunities for people to engage with creative and wellbeing activities which promote good mental health. We want to reduce people’s experience of social isolation, anxiety and depression, and challenge health inequalities in the local neighbourhoods of Fratton, Buckland and North End in particular.

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An autumn of creativity

The With Men in Mind programme of creativity and wellbeing workshops has had a brilliant start over the last couple of months with 22 men attending so far.

Starting again on Friday 13 January, the With Men in Mind workshops will be every Friday from 1.30 – 3pm at the Buckland United Reformed Church, 174 Kingston Road, PO2 7LP.

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With Men in Mind

In August we held a successful Open Day for Men’s Wellbeing and following responses to our online survey, we designed our new With Men in Mind workshop programme. Starting on Friday 30 September, we launched our autumn series of men’s creativity and wellbeing workshops!

So far we’ve had bird box building with Andy Ames, a Wilder Communities Project Officer from the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, a musical session using a variety of percussion and other instruments, and an introduction to water colour painting.

Launch of new Monday ChitChat Club

This coming Monday, 5th September sees the launch of a new initiative funded by Fratton Big Local. Every Monday morning from 10-12noon, you can drop in for a chat and a cuppa at the ChitChat Club held at the Community Cafe based at Buckland United Reformed Church.

Mary from the Good Mental Health Cooperative will be there to welcome you, along with our friendly volunteers and other local residents. So if you feel in need of some company, or would like to find out more information about activities or services in the local area, come along and join us on a Monday morning.

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Get creative this summer

During the summer holidays, we’re hosting creative activity sessions every Tuesday morning, open to women and men.

Bring your own creative activity or ideas, or make use of our creative materials for choice of art work, collage, drawing, jewellery making, macramé etc. If you’re not sure what you’d like to do, our friendly staff and volunteers are on hand to suggest activities.

Open Day for Men’s Wellbeing

Join us for an Open Day for Men’s Wellbeing on Wednesday 3 August from 11am to 2.30pm, at the Buckland United Reformed Church.

Our free workshops on the day include art (11am), creative thinking with lego (12.15pm) and games (1.30pm) with indoor archery, new age curling and table tennis!

There are stalls with information about wellbeing support in your local area, and free refreshments of course!

Mental Health Awareness in May

Mental Health Awareness Week, hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, is in its 22nd year and runs from 9-15 May.

Mark Rowland Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation said:

“We hope this year’s theme of loneliness will strike a chord with many of us who felt lonely and struggled throughout the Covid pandemic. 

“Millions of us experience loneliness from time to time. We know that some people are at higher risk of experiencing loneliness and the evidence shows the longer we feel lonely, the more we are at risk of mental health problems.

“Loneliness deserves more attention and we’re calling on everyone who has struggled as a result of being lonely to share their experiences. We must work together – as individuals, as a society and through government policy – to reduce loneliness and prevent mental health problems by investing in welcoming, social spaces and new community initiatives.”

In Memory of Martin

Dr. Martin Stevens, Chair and a founding director of the Good Mental Health Cooperative, has sadly died at the age of 57 from Covid related complications. His funeral took place today at the South Downs Natural Burial Site.

April is Stress Awareness Month

The Good Mental Health Cooperative is able to offer direct support if you’re experiencing overwhelming feelings of stress, isolation or anxiety. We’re working towards good mental health no matter what your starting point, just as you would with physical health. Through our Nexus project, we run an established weekly women’s creativity and wellbeing group, and if you’re interested in being involved with the planning for a similar men’s group, we want to hear from you!

Pop-Up Wellbeing and Information events

Through our Solent Connexions project, we’ve teamed up with the Portsmouth Carers Centre to deliver a series of Pop-Up Information and Wellbeing events in local community venues across Portsmouth.

Our first one is coming up on Wednesday 30 March at the Paulsgrove Community Centre, PO6 4JP, from 11am to 2.30pm.

The events will include creative and wellbeing activities, information stalls about support available, and free refreshments. The Carers Centre and the Good Mental Health Cooperative will also give talks on the support we can offer.

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