The RISE Project

The Bridge is bringing women together for a new project that will support them to achieve balance through a choice of free activities.

Stay all day or just come along for a bit. There is no pressure, take part in as much or as little as you want.

Check back soon for 2018 dates! Or register your interest at the bottom of the page to be contacted as soon as details have been finalised.

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Mindfulness is the practice of bringing awareness to our experience. It is a natural skill which we can develop through training our minds with simple and straightforward techniques which include meditation practises. Cultivating mindfulness can reduce stress and increase clarity of mind and a sense of wellbeing. It can enhance a sense of enjoyment and fulfilment, stability and peace of mind.

Mindfulness provides the skills to step out of autopilot and out of the stream of chatter in our heads so that we can choose to explore life afresh. It brings an enhanced sense of the world around us and leads us to be less judgemental and more compassionate to ourselves and to others.

Over thirty years of scientific research have shown that practising mindfulness can bring a wide range of physical and psychological benefits.

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It is well accepted that the arts help balance our emotions and can produce feelings of wellbeing. There is no expectation to produce wonderful art in this group, but rather to take part in ‘the doing’.

We work using the art materials and sometimes use music too. As this is a therapeutic wellbeing approach there is no teaching but rather an understanding that all is accepted and valued. Each member of the group is free to explore using different materials as they like. In this group there is no ‘good’ or ‘bad’. It is about the process rather than the end product. There will be time towards the end to share thoughts about art work etc but there is no pressure to join in this.

The group aims to encourage a sense of togetherness, offering a safe supportive place where feelings such as happiness, inadequacy, exhaustion, despair, celebration can be explored in a safe environment. etc. Sometimes, if wanted, experiences of childhood are shared in the group. The essence of the group is wellbeing of mind, body and soul. Each group member is important - ‘the group is yours, you are the group, we are all the group’. There is no analysis or delving just respect and acceptance.

Here are some comments from women in a previous group:

‘When I first found the art therapy group I was a bit confused as I was so used to helping and fixing other people that I forgot I was broken/exhausted myself. I found myself being able to talk freely among other mums anonymously, and share things that I’d have otherwise buried in the abyss.

‘In the group we have learnt to let out our feelings in constructive ways actually giving you freedom to play with ink, paint, clay. Reminding us that we are allowed to just Be. It is enlightening and opening up doors I’d closed years ago’.

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Volunteer your time and help the cafe team to put together a healthy and nutritious lunch for the group.

In 2008, The New Economics Foundation (NEF) did extensive research into "feeling good and functioning well" and set out 5 evidence-based actions to improve personal wellbeing. One of the "Five ways to wellbeing" is GIVE.

Giving could be to do with your time and skills or your participating in social and community life. As well as being rewarding, volunteering creates connections with other people and can help to build real life skills.

The Bridge wants to encourage volunteering to help you gain practical skills for life and work, as well as building on some of the key messages within wellbeing. There will be opportunities to be involved in all stages of cooking, from prepping ingredients to the final plating up. You will have a chance to learn about healthy food alternatives and to help out in a working kitchen.

Once the food has been prepared, you will be welcome to come together to eat what you have created along with others who will be joining us to eat the lunch you have made.

Cooking projects are something we have done previously at The Bridge, but we are looking to expand this throughout the RISE project and see what we can learn and create together.

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Sit down and enjoy a healthy and nutritious lunch with good company.

The lunch aspect of the day is a great opportunity for everyone from all activities to come together and share a meal. Whether you're trying a type of food that you have never tried before, making a connection with a new friend, or just enjoying the chatty, vibrant atmostphere, there is something for everyone.

Some of the meals you might get a chance to sample are Caribbean salmon with a pineapple salsa, a traditional Polish soup, sweet potato and halloumi salad, and many more!

All dietary requirements will be catered for. Just let us know and we will make sure that there is something there for you.

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Try out a variety of fitness classes, such as pilates, yoga, zumba and more! There will also be plenty of opportunities to exercise in our wonderful women-only gym space.

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Presentations and conversations about different healthy living topics.

There are so many different things that contribute towards a 'healthier you'. If you're interested in learning more about healthy eating, how food affects your mood, how to maintain your health as you get older, and much more, these presentations could be for you.


Please register your interest for The RISE Project here. Someone will be in touch with you soon!

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