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Engage Here – Small Good Stuff grant winner

Part of Community Catalysts’ ethos and social enterprise business model is to support the sector and reinvest back into the wider community. Earlier this year, Community Catalysts ran two grant programmes for our fantastic Small Good Stuff members who run tiny community enterprises, organisations and groups that offer help and care for others. In this ‘super story’ we find out more about our grant winner ‘Engage Here’ and how they used the money to provide more opportunities for the people they support….

Engage Here CIC offer creative arts for those living with dementia. We used the grant buy tools and materials for participants of ‘Art at Home’ – a 6-week online sensory programme of art workshops for people with dementia or mild cognitive impairment, alongside their carers.

“People are still here, they are still doing and experiencing all the time. These workshops are proof they are still present in their lives” Jayne, London, carer and daughter of Elizabeth

The 6 x 1 hour sessions included:

  • Cyanotyping
  • Aromatic printing
  • Felt making
  • Stencil making
  • Drawing sound
  • Clay modelling
  • Phone calls between each session to further support creativity

Many of the tools, materials and worksheets from the sessions are reusable so the participants can continue their creativity beyond the time they spend with us. This means the participants now have tools as well as the knowledge to keep on stimulating their senses.

“Engage Here has encouraged me to explore arts and crafts, using natural materials such as leaves. Filling the leaf’s surface with ink, feels like I am filling in the holes in my Alzheimer’s brain” Stella, Surrey, living with Alzheimer’s

12 people took part in the initial programme with a further 30 people expected as indirect beneficiaries. The worksheets will be tested during our next 6 programmes over the following 3 months, with an expected 72 beneficiaries.

While most stories about dementia are ones of sadness, through these workshops, I want to create a new narrative, a story of hope and joy” Althea, London, carer and daughter of Albrown

Those who took part in the sessions said they enjoyed being part of a creative setting and the creative challenge. They welcomed the social contact and meeting people in a similar situation and in turn felt keener to socialise. The also felt the workshops revived past creative skills, as well as teaching them new skills. The identified said they felt better in themselves and as a result felt more energetic and were inspired to continue to be creative.

“The new activities that involve fine motor skills, refined my hand-eye coordination” Surna, London, carer and mother of Tahir


Meet all grant winners from our Small Good Stuff grant programme:

Meet all grant winners from The Buzz grant programme which helped community enterprises to create and share videos for our online platform of inclusive, exciting and accessible activities:

 

Posted on 19th July 2021 in Community Catalysts, Funding and awards