People who use services at Enfield Down in Honley, near Huddersfield, have been doing their bit for charity this Christmas. They have been taking part in special craft workshops to produce Christmas novelties for sale in the local Mind shop.
Enfield Down is a 31 bed inpatient intensive rehabilitation unit for people with mental health problems and is located within a community setting. The facility is provided by the South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which provides specialist NHS services across Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield.
Service users have been making the Christmas novelties as part of a pre-vocational workshop group, run by the occupational therapy team. This was set up in response to interest in participating in some form of voluntary work.
The project involved making novelty reindeer Christmas tree decorations which were then donated to Mind and sold in their Huddersfield based charity shop.
Mind is the leading mental health charity for England and Wales and it campaigns to create a society that promotes and protects good mental health for all – a society where people with experience of mental distress are treated fairly, positively and with respect.
The workshop project emphasised service users taking the lead as well as social inclusion. Service users were assessed before taking part to make sure their individuals skills could be put to best use and to ensure they got the most out of the project.
Tasks included making the products, making arrangements with staff at Mind for selling the goods and sourcing and purchasing materials to use. As well as improving self esteem and confidence some of the tasks were designed to improve coordination, dexterity and strength.
Occupational therapist Sharon Greenwood, said; "The use of creativity in healthcare environments has long been recognised; increasing self-esteem, developing social skills, helping community integration and improving an individual’s quality of life. It’s great that the creative skills of our service users can be put to good use by helping charity. The manager of the local Mind welcomed the prospect of working with a local service provider and we are really pleased to support the local Mind shop by producing these novelties."