We provide an ongoing programme of creative activities alongside our regular monthly meetings. We believe in the power of creativity and the arts to lift us up, open conversations and help us explore aspects of ourselves and our journeys.
In 2021 we secured funding from The Arts Council England to deliver a focussed year long programme of courses to support women and non-binary parents’ mental health through creativity.
We ran 8 weeks of creative journaling online, guided by the incredible artist, producer, facilitator and mother Lizzy Humber. We explored a huge range of topics, and created our own journals of paint, pen, collage and much more. Using inspiration from the Maternal Journal creative invitations, our participants journeyed and journaled together, sharing their work, thoughts and experiences.
During the pandemic we found ourselves quite suddenly ripped away from our community and all the things that held us all together. We wanted to make sure our community still had ways to connect with each other and we also wanted to make visible the stories that were now even further behind closed doors.
We asked our members to share their stories with us, the good, the bad and everything in between. What did mothering and parenting look like during the pandemic, how did we cope, what did we learn?
Click here to read the stories.
Parenting in a Pandemic Podcast
Wanting to keep connected, to put a smile on people’s faces, to raise important issues and to keep our programme of themes, guest speakers and honest dialogue about parenting going, despite lockdowns, we made a podcast. Hiding in forts made of pillows to muffle any sound, we chatted, laughed, listened and cried through 20 podcast episodes, exploring a wide variety of issues. We are very grateful for funding from the National Lottery Awards for All for supporting what our listeners told us was a real life line during a time of extreme isolation. You can hear them all here.
Mum and Baby Movement Lab
Since 2019 we have been working with the fantastic dancer and choreographer Mafé Toledo, to find ways to support pre and postnatal women to move, feel free, active and creative, with their babies. Across two years of Covid pandemic, we delivered dance classes outdoors, with babies in slings, come rain or shine, to help find a calm, peace and solidarity, across multiple 6 week courses. You can find some short movement invitations from Mafé here to have a go at moving at home, with or without your baby!
We are grateful to Dance Reading and Sport in Mind for their partnership on this project, and we are thrilled that dance classes continue to be offered by Sport in Mind, you can find out about them here.