Kintsugi offers mental help hope for Harlow

Faith Matters / Tue 31st May 2022 at 09:42am

KINTSUGI Hope is a UK charity striving to make a difference to people’s mental wellbeing, through providing and organising training, courses, events, and resources.

Thanks to the support and encouragement of Heart 4 Harlow, the first Kintsugi Hope Wellbeing Group programme has been firmly established at St Stephen’s Church, Tye Green.

A Kintsugi Hope Group is a safe and supportive space for people who feel or have felt overwhelmed by mental health and wellbeing challenges, providing tools for self-management in a facilitated peer mentoring setting.

The structured, yet flexible, course runs for 12 weeks and includes activities designed to help participants to accept themselves, understand their value and worth, and grow towards a more resilient and hopeful future. The issues covered include: disappointment, loss, anxiety, anger, perfectionism, shame, and resilience.

St Stephen’s ran the first course in Harlow in the Spring of this year and 8 participants completed the course. The course was run by Ian Beckett, an Authorised Local Preacher at St Stephen’s and Julie Stevens, a member of Freshwaters Church, and such was the success they have both agreed to run a new course this autumn, and plans are in hand for another course in Harlow in Summer 2023.

Ian said, “We have a vision ultimately for there to be a number Kintsugi Hope hubs in Harlow’s churches and community venues, reflecting the aim of transforming society, so that mental and emotional health is understood and accepted, with safe and supportive communities in which everyone can grow and flourish.”

Julie said, “Feedback from the first group has been amazing. Really encouraging. One participant said ‘I have been highly impressed by the whole programme and believe it has the potential to radically improve mental health and resilience in Harlow!’”

‘Kintsugi’ is a Japanese word which refers to the technique for repairing pottery with seams of gold. The word means ‘golden joinery’ and reflects a philosophy that brokenness is repaired in a way that makes the object more beautiful, and even more unique than it was prior to being broken. Instead of hiding the scars it makes a feature of them. Ian says, “People are resilient not despite their flaws and their scars, but because of them!”

There will be four taster open evenings at St Stephen’s on the following Thursdays evenings: 9 June, 7 July, 28 July, and 1 September at 7:30pm, and the new course will commence on Thursday 22 September.

For further information please email Ian on [email protected] or telephone 01279 442669 (ansaphone).

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2 Comments for Kintsugi offers mental help hope for Harlow:

David Forman
2022-06-01 08:53:34

Nice initiative from Ian Beckett and Julie Stevens to help improve mental health outcomes in Harlow. Well done to both of you.

Jenn Clarke
2022-06-01 17:09:56

Kintsugi Hope is also being run at Harlow Baptist Church, Old Harlow. Their second course starts in September.

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