• A weekend event for therapeutic writers

    Facilitating Change - Lapidus Scotland Residential training course
    
    P1030510
    
    
    Change – Loss – Grief — Healing
    
    How to Facilitate groups using Literary Arts
     alongside Visual Art, Music and Movement
    
    A Residential Workshop for Experienced Facilitators AND Potential Trainers
     of Reading, Writing and Storytelling for Wellbeing
    
    2nd to 5th November 2017
     Thursday from 5pm till Sunday 4pm
     at Whatton Lodge, East Lothian
    
    
    Whatton lodge is located on Hill Road, Gullane , overlooks Gullane Bay
     and offers spectacular views over the Firth of Forth.
    
    Course Leaders
    
    Ted Bowman, Valerie Gillies, Larry Butler, plus a guest artist
     Further information and questions: lapidus.scotland.1@gmail.com
    
    
    

     

     

  • Let’s get bibliotherapy widespread!

     

     

    Weeread2ndlot (18 of 30) (640x424)Photos by D.M Fox

    If you wish to find out more about what is happening in the work around bibliotherapy, here are some

    News and Events for Scotland

    See what is on at public libraries through CILIPS and the National Library in the next year or so. There is an ‘Open Book‘ project you may wish to contact if you live near Edinburgh.

    Why don’t you come to the

    Words Work Well for All Workshops

    at Glasgow Women’s Library on the 18th of March? Sir Kenneth Calman will give a talk and he is Chair of The National Library. You can also get the chance to network with other people working in this field.Tickets are only £10 here:

     

    The workshops look really interesting :

    PROGRAMME WORKSHOPS

    Out Of The Box: Writing in the Archives with Donna Moore Using the treasures in Glasgow Women’s Library’s museum and archive to inspire creative writing. From Suffragettes to Sewing Patterns, from Radical Posters to Roller Derby, from Bunty to Badges – GWL’s collections are a cornucopia for creativity.

    Donna spends her time surrounded by words and women’s history – whether in her role as Adult Literacy and Numeracy Development Worker at Glasgow Women’s Library, as part of her Creative Writing PhD at the University of Stirling, or as co-host of the annual crime fiction convention CrimeFest.

    Balance for Life: when the wind blows the tree bends – tai-chi, poetry & healing with Larry Butler Each tai-chi move is a metaphor, each move could be the title of a poem and playing tai-chi can boost your immune system.

    Larry writes poetry, teaches tai-chi, editor PlaySpace Publications and convenor for Lapidus Scotland, and facilitates writing groups in health and social care settings.

    The Mother Tongue: how language shapes us – with Helen Lamb Everybody has a private vocabulary, which they may not even be fully aware of. Some expressions are handed down through generations; you might suddenly hear yourself repeating something to your own children that was often said to you as a child. This workshop will explore some of our earliest experiences and memories of language and use them to inspire poems and stories.

    Helen is a poet and fiction writer and has published a short story collection, Superior Bedsits, and a poetry collection, Strange Fish. Helen has facilitated creative writing groups for Forth Valley Health Board, Falkirk & District Association for Mental Health, the Maggie’s centre in Edinburgh, and for Open Secret, a confidential service for adult survivors of childhood abuse.

    Learning through Stories – a 20 minute talk with Sir Kenneth Calman

    Ken is Chairman of the National Library of Scotland; Chancellor of the University of Glasgow. Former Chief Medical Officer for Scotland then England & Wales; He chaired the Commission on Scottish Devolution, and was President of the British Medical Association. He was awarded a KCB in 1996. His most recent publication is: “A Doctor’s Line. Poems and Prescriptions in Health and Healing.”

    Paint & Write – with Janie Walker Together we will create a beautiful pastel painting followed by some “artistic writing”

    Janie teaches ‘non believers’ to create Art, writing and spiritual visualisations to increase self-esteem. Janie’s hobbies are also her work so she believes she is very grateful to have been gifted with her talents.

    Journaling and Yoga with Jayne Wilding Journaling and yoga are ways of connecting with our innermost self. Join Jayne Wilding in a workshop which will combine relaxing yoga (done from our chairs) and journaling exercises to help us on the path to knowing ourselves.

    Jayne is a freelance writer and yoga teacher. sky blue notebook from the Pyrenees draws on the experience of living in the foothills of the French Pyrenees for three years. Jayne runs writing and yoga workshops for health and wellbeing in Fife and Dundee.

    Bedtime Stories for Beginners with Stewart Ennis Working with readers and writers in the context of a maximum security prison – In this workshop I will discuss my own personal experiences of working in prison and explore the creative ways in which I’ve learned to deal with the issues of personal sharing and personal protection. I will also look at the ways in which reading and writing can have a positive impact on prisoner’s relationships with one another and with loved ones on the other side of the wall, and how creative writing can nurture empathy and help to creative positive new identities.

    How do I encourage prisoners to open up while actively discouraging the prisoners from writing about the elephant in the room, their crime?

    Stewart is a writer, performer and teacher. He was a founder member of the theatre ensemble Benchtours and has written and performed for many Scottish theatre companies. For the past five years he has been Creative Writing & Performance tutor at HMP Shotts. His first novel The Saving of Joseph Kirkland will be published at the end of 2017.

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    You can also join Lapidus Uk which focuses on writing for wellbeing. There is a Jiscmail email alert group called BIBLIOTHERAPY you can perhaps join – they advertise jobs, research and events.I can add you to my Wee Read list for occasional events and news as well, if you wish.Contact me here if you would like to write a short piece about the work you have done for this Wee Read website.

    Enjoy all your reading and writing for wellbeing!

    Christine     

  • Wee Read Moves Town!

    After weeks of packing and moving we are settled back into Glasgow, at Scotstounhill. Our links with Lanarkshire will remain strong, and in fact our See Me Champion, Christine has just given a talk at the Lanarkshire Recovery Network conference on Friday 18th November.We look forward to widening our work towards the West and the rest of Scotland.Goodbye Hamilton, thanks for all the inspiration!

    Working with our Lanark writing group continues, and we had a day outing to the national Museum of Scotland last month. It was so enjoyable, that we want to go again! Another trip to a pantomime has been discussed, as some members have never been to one!We will be reading our poems and talking to folks at the Stonehouse Hope Cafe xmas event.The group there with Adrian is growing from strength to strength.

    This week, our Maggie’s writer will be hosting a stall at the festive fayre selling books and other items to raise funds for a publication of the groups’ poems and writings.

    So, it’s all go!The autumn and now, the start of winter has come upon us and we sit witnessing change every day.

    Change is a big theme in our work.This week, our board will meet to review our last year, and to plan the year ahead. We have 4 new volunteers, which is a fantastic achievement. We look forward to a co-design and co-production approach for leading our services.

    Christine is also working for Lapidus, The Writing for Wellbeing Organization as Digital Editor.This broadens the reach, and creates new connections across our borders.

    I will leave you with one of my own poems, written a few years ago while I was in Hamilton. Dedicated to my brother Ian who helps us on this website, thanks Ian!

    All Was Silent

    All was silent.

    Many lives lost for words,

    til many years after,

    I say

    ma Granda died at 31;

    a miner, a heart attack,

    ma Daddy a week old.

    Seventh son

    no father knew.

    His seventh son

    inherits true.

    All was silent.

    Many years lost for words,

    til many years after,

    I say

    Ma Daddy died at 51;

    a steel worker, a heart attack,

    ma brother 4 years old.

    Til after many years I say,

    I’d cry until ma bones ran dry.

    Unutterable loss of my favourite guy.

    No longer silent,

    words speak at last,

    To Ian I say,

    sometimes love has no words to mark its’ day.

    C. Cather

  • Exciting training events all over Scotland!

    Words Work Well Training in Bibliotherapy

    Lapidus Scotland invites you to Bibliotherapy Trainings Scotland-Wide during June 2016. Participants will learn about leading therapeutic creative reading and writing sessions for individuals and groups in various settings. Training will also refer to Lapidus’ website http://wordsworkwellscotland.co.uk/ – a bibliotherapy toolkit for facilitators.

    Poems, images and conversation in creative communication with people who have dementia
    Facilitator Paula Jennings. 2- 5pm, 6th June, Conference Room, Central Library, The Wellgate, Dundee DD1 1DB. With input from library staff on the Dementia Library. click here to book

    An Introduction to Bibliotherapy for Writers and Storytellers
    Facilitators Larry Butler and Valerie Gillies. 10am – 4pm, 8th June, Storytelling Centre, 43-45 High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1SR.
    click here to book

    Choosing Reading Material and Facilitating an Expressive Writing Group
    Facilitators Jayne Wilding and Maureen Sangster. 2pm – 5.30pm, 13th June, Kirkcaldy Galleries, Abbotshall Road, Kirkcaldy, KY1 1YG. Click here to book

    Treasures in the Chest & Lifelines
    Facilitators Mandy Haggith and Margot Henderson. 10 – 2pm, 18th June, The Spectrum Centre, 1 Margaret Street, Inverness IV1 1LS.  click here to book

    How Reading Informs Writing
    Facilitator Helen Lamb. 1.30 – 4pm, 20th June, The Glasgow Women’s Library, 23 Landressy Street, Glasgow G40 1B.
    Click here to book

    Strengthening Facilitators’ Skills
    Facilitator Liz Niven. 1.30 – 4pm, 23rd June at University of Glasgow, Rutherford McCowan Building,
    Room R127, Crichton Campus, Dumfries DG1 4ZL. Includes informal time for questions and networking.
    Click here to book

    This development opportunity in creative facilitation is for those that work in health and social care settings, mental health centres, prisons, libraries, in education and community arts. It will also appeal to storytellers, writers and those promoting staff well- being in workplaces.  All are welcome, those experienced in facilitation and those new to the experience.
    Cost £25 for day long training: £10 for half a day plus Eventbrite booking fee.

     

    Lapidus is supported by Awards for All Scotland, Creative Scotland and Scottish Book Trust’s Live Literature Fund
  • Words Work Well Toolkit

    The Words Work Well bibliotherapy toolkit for practitioners is much improved and ready for use! Enjoy!Please add comments and if you notice gaps, we are looking to continue adding more examples of good practice!
    http://wordsworkwellscotland.co.uk/

    Includes a video of Ted Bowman introducing stories and creative bibliotherapy.

  • Storycoaching with Dr Michael Williams

    JpegI am currently training one-to-one with Michael Williams, a storycoach. The aim is to become a narrative leader. I have found the process to be stretching, energizing and fruitful. Michael is a great communicator and his dialogue always probes, to draw me out of myself, but always in a kindly way that nourishes me as I change.

     

    I feel bigger on the inside thanks to the sessions we have enjoyed together. I can see myself communicating better, more strongly, more empathically and with more courage.Thanks Michael for your gifts!Find out more…

     

    I recommend his weekly newsletter– it is full of inspiring stories!

    I met Michael some years ago at a Lapidus event when he led a workshop in transformational storytelling. I wrote about about that earlier this year.See more…

  • Lapidus Scotland launches a new booklet – Writing Place at the CCA 17th September

    I N V I T A T I O N
    Writing Place Anthology Launch
    with Lesley O’Brien as host

    and Ted Bowman talk on Bibliotherapy:
    Words Work Well: Reading, Writing and Storytelling
    Thursday 17th September 4:30 to 6:30pm
    CCA clubroom 350 Sauchiehall St,
    Glasgow G2 3JD

    Light refreshments included – RSVP lapidus.scotland@yahoo.co.uk

    Lesley O’Brien is a Storyteller, Singer, Family Resource Worker with Glasgow Women’s Aid and former chair of Lapidus Scotland. She is a member of Kittlinclapperdin, blending poetry, stories and song. Writing Place facilitator with Voices of Experience.

    Ted Bowman, poet, editor, grief educator, and bibliotherapist will give a talk followed by questions and discussion. Ted is a community instructor in Family Education at the University of Minnesota and an adjunct professor in Social Work at the University of St. Thomas. He is co- editor of The Wind Blows, The Ice Breaks, a volume of poems by Minnesota poets addressing themes of loss and renewal, and author of two booklets, Loss of Dreams: A Special Kind of Grief and Finding Hope When Dreams Have Shattered.

    Light refreshments included – RSVP lapidus.scotland@

    ALL WELCOME!

    Find out more about Lapidus by downloading the leaflet here. See more on the invitation: Writing Place Launch 17Sept15

  • Hope Cafe Session 2nd September

    We started with a poem by Joseph T. Renaldi, Gratefulness, here is an extract:

    Gratefulness
    I am grateful for the eyes that I can see
    the activities that can be done by me.
    I am grateful for the ears that I may hear
    the sobbing of those who need me near.

    I am grateful for the lips that I might speak
    words of comfort and peace to all who seek.
    I am grateful for a mind that I might know how to aid those who need me so.

    Full poem is available here2015-08-13 009

    The format was to focus on each of the 5 senses, so we used our listening, our seeing, our taste, smell and touch to write what the Hope Cafe gave to each.Some of the great responses are here:
    What do you see here?

    Friendliness, dedication, light;

    I see different people all pulled together; sharing health, stories and friendship;
    sharing good things

    A nice group of people getting me out and about. People chattin’, laughin’;

    Cheerful people seeing the same as me.

    What do you hear in this place?…

    People talking, laughter;
    voices, door opening and shutting;

    What do you taste here?…

    Irn Bru;

    Coffee – bitter, chocolate – sweetness.

    What do you smell here?…

    Coffee.

    What do you touch here?…

    Empathy, someone to listen , to take time, is valid in every way;
    We can touch life together and feel it flowing around us.

    I love the way some senses mingled with others, especially touch, which showed the open-hearted approach in The Hope Cafe.We all touch each other’s hearts.

    I shared my own poem, ‘After Mum’s Stroke’ -describing how grateful I felt about caring for my mum. We moved on to write on the thoughts and emotions that we have about the Hope Cafe –

     What do you think about this place?
    It is so unique;
    I think it is a brave place – in an uncertain life, there was no guarantee it would work out.
    I think it is a good place.
    I think Hope Cafe is a wonderful place where no one judges you and I feel accepted.
    Hope Cafe is a lifeline.

    What do you feel about this place?
    I feel I am at home.
    It is comfortable and friendly.
    I am thankful it is near to my town.
    Socialising – feels a relief to know I can go any time without any pressure. I feel I can say what I feel to volunteers and it is a release.
    I feel it’s a very worthwhile meeting place and I enjoy coming and socialising and of course the expressive writing!

    Then we explored  objects for each of the senses:

    Hearing

    – a story called ‘Oor Street’ by Margaret Boyce.This was written in the voice of a wee lassie, and wis fun to read and share oor ain memories.It is in The Scottish Book Trust 2014 book Stories of Home

    cropped-weeread-logo1.jpgHere’s a wee bit:

    “A take ma gob stopper oot ma mooth, an A wonner if ma tongue’s blue noo.  A stick it oot as for as A kin, but A canny see it.  Wiping ma sticky hauns doon the back a ma bran new pink shorts, A look roun tae see if anybidy’s watching.  A feel guilty.  Ma daddy always tells me no tae clean ma hauns on ma claithes.  Eh says it’s no lady-like.  Black tar fae the melting pavement oozes up the side a ma white sandal an onti ma clean white soak.  A try to wipe it off oan the grass – but ma soak’s streaked green an black noo…”

     

    Seeing

    -Dr. Seuss picture book, I Can Lick Fifty Tigers Today a fun story too!Made us smile.

    Best line “I can lick one mighty tiger today…”.More Dr. Seuss here

    Taste

    Mango bits, coconut…
     Smell

    Lavender oil, a rose, basil leaves and mint leaves.
    Touch

    A wee soft leprechaun, a wooden goblet, a twig.

    ?????????????

    The writers had a lot of thoughtful pieces and some will be used for the coming booklet.Here is one gorgeous example:

    Donna 2
    Oh to indulge,
    on such wonderful things created for my pleasure;
    made perfectly.
    It’s truly a gift.
    No money exchanged would I depart,
    for this awesome beauty all surrounding me
    makes my heart skip a beat;
    Calm, peace, serenity endures.

    Thanks, Donna!

    We felt grateful for two new faces and voices today, and as usual, I felt happy and buzzin’  at the end.

  • The Alliance Citizen’s Assembly

    I went with my Lapidus Scotland hat on as a volunteer at the Conference today, we had put our new leaflets into the delegate packs, so that was a good intro to everyone I bumped into. I got a few people to follow up with our Lapidus Words Work Well project this year, and did not get too frazzled!I have been to so many conferences before that you just  learn to hold back a bit.

    I did tweet, though it’s odd to be ‘allowed’ to bring out your phone and type away as the person is talking! I quite like it, even though am still getting my @’s and my #’s mixed up or whatever!Ye can be quite cheeky in a tweet.

    The main focus of the day was a sober discussion about how to become the ‘centre stage’ to create new Scottish Government’s policies for Health and Social Care.These were the words this morning from Sheena Robison, Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing & Sport. A new, separate Wellbeing service was mooted and people thought about this through the day. The replies I heard were negative, a new service would be just another tier of power and control over people.

    I hope the national conversation about this will continue at an easily accessible level for everyone that this matters to…

    See tweets here:

    or go to Twitter  #citizen15

     

  • Storycoach Michael Williams

    Are you thinking about writing your life story again, or rewriting something traumatic that still affects your behaviour?There are various ways to do that.

    Later this year I will do some rewriting on the mental health stigma that happened to me and other people.

    I was reminded of a session by Michael Williams, where he led transformative storytelling  at a Lapidus event in Glasgow. He is a great talent and a gift to us all. He used the ancient Greek chorus technique. This means that you tell a group about your traumatic event, then they choose a sentence of your own words and repeat it back to you. I told about a traumatic event in my life- causing a fire in a friend’s house where me and my two kids were staying. This had been about twenty years before, and since then,  I had always felt  guilt, blame and shame. My story that I constantly repeated in my head was :

    ‘I could have killed my children’.

    At the transformative storytelling group, the people who spoke my words back to me then went further and told me what a positive thing I had done. That I was a hero, I saved them, I got them out.

    I broke down and wept.

    The story became:

    ‘I saved my children from the fire.’

    and this literally changed the story I had told myself  and do tell myself.

    The relief and the spaciousness that opened up inside of me is strange and amazing.

    I would love to work with Michael again, to share his talents for others’ benefit.

    Have a look at his website !