Creative Ceramics with Nottinghamshire MIND

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Since 2016, the Harley Foundation has worked alongside Nottinghamshire MIND as part of their ‘Well Community’ project.

This initiative is designed for adults who may be struggling with their mental health, or feeling isolated or disconnected with their community. It offers individuals the opportunity to become involved in workshops, courses and group activities, in order to support and improve their well-being.

Our Creative Ceramics courses, which we deliver as part of this programme, gives individuals the opportunity to participate in a ten week ceramics course, led by an experienced ceramicist and facilitator. We deliver eight of these courses a year.

During sessions, those taking part explore different techniques and discover the freedom of using clay creatively. The courses start with focusing on the basic skills of hand building. Participants learn how to make pinch pots and construct forms using coiling and slabs of clay.

As the weeks progress, attendees move onto more challenging projects. They also learn to experiment with surface texture, decoration and colour. All participants are given their own journals, where they can chart their progress.

The aim of the courses is to encourage mindfulness by providing participants with a hands-on tactile experience. However, there are many other benefits associated with taking part. The workshops offer individuals the chance to learn and develop a new skill.

At the end of the course attendees will have built up a basic knowledge of building and creating with clay and feel a real sense of self-achievement. This project also enables participants to connect with other members of their local community and to build long-lasting relationships.

One attendee described it as a “valuable course that has helped me through a difficult period.” Another reflected that, by participating, “I realised I could be creative and wasn’t alone. It has been invaluable to me.” A third attendee told us that the course “helped me socialize by doing something I love – being creative.”

Funded by NCC