Last Monday I went with a few service users to a talk at Islington Town Hall. The talk was called, “What were black people doing in world war 1?”, which was organised by Every Voice and Black History Walks.
The talk was very well informed and used interesting and educational slides and videos to deliver the information. The curator was especially engaging and answered many questions posed by the public.
The few service users who joined me really enjoyed the talk and after there were conversations about their own families experience in the military and also about their heritage in Africa. It prompted conversations that ‘friends’ had never had before and it was great to see people, who have known each other for quite some time, learn more about their shared history.
Here at Holloway Neighbourhood Group, we are interested in the links between physical and mental health. Many of our service users said that they would like to participate in Pilates, so we decided to run some pilot classes. We encouraged people who experience mental health issues to give it a go, and overall 33 people attended. We asked participants to complete questionnaires at the beginning and end of the 6 week course, and the results were fascinating.
75% of participants recorded a decrease in their anxiety levels, 79% said that the class improved their mobility, and 64% said that they felt happier. One attendee commented that the class was “Very strengthening, centering and therapeutic”.
The results were so impressive that The Arsenal Foundation have kindly agreed to support our classes for the next year. They take place on Mondays, 1.30 to 2.30 pm at the Old Fire Station, and are free of charge. The class is suitable for people of all abilities, and you don’t need to book ahead.
So, come on down to our friendly community centre to join a class that is proven to help with stress and anxiety, and to generally lift your mood.
Lucy Bingham, HNG Chief Executive