Those of you who have been following our Foundation news for a while will know that our Durham team have great success delivering group activities. Here is an update from their recent activities.

Women’s Group

The second women’s event to run in conjunction with Durham police was held on Tuesday 23rd May at the Durham office. Women attended from all over the county who have shown motivation to change and were treated to a pamper session by students from the beauty department at Durham New college. On offer were facials, make up session, hand and nail treatments, skin care advice and foot spa. Harbour, a domestic abuse support service in Durham,  supplied resources with their details on:  lip balms, nail files and book marks. Additional fit kit information was provided to the women on self-esteem, confidence building and healthy relationships. Healthy snacks were available along with a loyalty card for attending, encouraging them to attend future sessions. The whole event was a tribute to how partner agency working can result in a hugely successful and rewarding event not only for the customers but for staff, partner agencies, volunteers and students. The feedback was very positive, some just feeling better about themselves and others wanting to come back and volunteer. The next women’s event in June will be arts, crafts, mindfulness and relaxation.

Relaxing facial Nail treatment

Customer led activity

The Durham group session this week was led by a customer who volunteered to share his skills of matchstick model making. He planned the session himself and picked a design he thought was easy enough for customers to learn the craft. The session was very relaxing as the customers listened to music and ate healthy snacks, they were surprised how quickly the time passed and enjoyed designing their individual crosses. They also said it was good to learn something new and suggested we donate the finished crosses to the local Waddington street church who support the Durham team with fund raising and various donations. We finished off by having a jamming session with the musical instruments in preparation for the talent contest in June.

Matchstick crosses


The Durham group session this week focussed on Co-Production. Activities included taking an inventory of all the items in the group room including arts and craft supplies, books, musical instruments and stationary. The customers counted each item and collated the information which was then used to list items they would like to purchase  in order to use them in future group sessions. They found the exercise very therapeutic and suggested how they thought the group room should be set out in order for it to look more welcoming. One customer produced a poster which will be used to advertise the group sessions to those customers who are at present not attending. Customers learnt more about recycling during the session and how we can reduce our impact on our environment. A customer who had never recycled before helped to separate items into piles and recycled them into the office bins. He said he would be using his recycle bin from now on at home. At the end of the session customers were able to have a go at some of the musical instruments and came up with ideas for the talent contest being run on the 13th June at a local church.

We look forward to your next update, including news from the talent contest!