Hospice Writing for Well-being

by Writing for Life in Haywards Heath, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 11th March 2017 we successfully raised £110 with 8 supporters in 28 days

I aim to provide a two year programme of writing for well-being classes at a local hospice day centre, for patients and carers.

by Writing for Life in Haywards Heath, England, United Kingdom

Why do I want to do this?

I've been involved in writing for well-being for about ten years and became interested in using creative writing for people with life limiting illnesses in 2013, when I mentored a student through writing his autobiography in his last year, and we jointly saw the benefit in terms of his general well-being and quality of life. Convinced this could be of wider help, I offered a short course, on a voluntary basis, at the well-being centre of a local hospice, and this met with a positive response from patients, carers and staff. We managed to find some funding to run a second course, but we only have two sessions left and no more funding. This is why we need your help.

What is writing for well-being?

Writing for well-being is a form of creative writing that is more about the process of writing rather than the product. It is  gently, therapeutically explorative, focusing on how people are feeling, physically and emotionally in the moment, and helping them to express this in a safe environment.  It also helps them explore things that are happening to them, have happened in the past, or will happen in the future.

Why is writing for well-being valuable in a hospice setting?

  • It provides a session where the focus is creative, productive and engrossing, giving mental respite.
  • It creates a safe, non-judgmental, group environment for people to express how they are feeling.
  • It helps people explore things that are happening to them, past, present and future and how they feel about it.
  • It is largely a non-physical activity that most people, even with very restricting disabilities, can access.
  • It is something they can continue doing at home and share with others if they wish to do so.
  • It is also fun and we laugh a lot!

What do the writers feel about it?

Following the first course, this was some of the feedback from students:

“I have found this class to be highly therapeutic.  Also, my wife has commented that this was the first time I had looked forward to doing something for a very long time...” Jeff (patient)

“I found writing and using my imagination a very inspiring and enjoyable experience.” Paul (carer)

“I’ve looked forward to it and felt energised by the class.” (volunteer)

So why do we need your help?

Patients have said that creative writing is beneficial to their wellbeing so any money raised here will really enhance the activities offered by the hospice. I would like to run a rolling programme, for at least two years, possibly using it as a basis to extend the service, using other tutors, into more hospices, benefitting a wider range of people. Please help!

This crowd funding page is independent of the hospice and does not represent the hospice directly. All monies raised will be spent on creative writing sessions within a hospice environment.

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