Arts, Crafts and Community

On Friday some of us from Chelston Park attended an art event at Nynehead Court – a care home outside Wellington.

For the last few months, a group of residents and our activities coordinator, Emma, have been working with Ruth Fielder. Ruth is an artist coordinator involved with Handmade Wellbeing, a project that trains artists to work with people in elderly care settings – both those living at home and in a care homes. The artist coordinators use arts and crafts to enhance the wellbeing of older people.

Christmas is fast approaching and Ruth wasn’t short of ideas: over the past weeks we’ve made orange clove pomanders; we’ve done material printing; we’ve created Christmas wreathes; and some of us even tried our hands at felting.

Ruth brought these activities together into a couple of mixed-media pieces (see one of them to the right), and it was these that were on display at Nynehead Court.

Over the weeks, the residents here at Chelston have enjoyed working on the project. Ruth did an excellent job getting everyone involved – whatever their ability or artistic background. The results are lovely, but what struck me most was the community aspect of the project. Seven care homes and support groups in the East Somerset area contributed art to the event and we filled up the orangery. Even the deputy mayor turned up! Bringing carers and residents from various homes together was a nice touch, and everyone enjoyed having tea and a chat while they looked at each other’s creations.

Speaking to the organisers at Nynehead Court, they are hoping to do more projects like this in the future, and judging by this one, they will be a great success. Looking forward to it!