SW18 Club is a group for individuals within Wandsworth, Westminster and the surrounding area aged between 18 and 35. The group aims to help individuals who want to improve their confidence and social connections by finding community activities and groups that they are interested in, and helping them to participate in them. These might be regular classes or sessions, or they might be more discrete visits to new places. The group also provides a regular space to meet with people, chat, and give support to members when it is needed.
The group has a focus on helping individuals to overcome mental health issues and live fuller lives which are more integrated within the community.
Every session we plan a different activity, each one aimed at trying something new or going somewhere different, and each one with the potential for continued participation within the community. If members then want to continue with that activity, the group will support them to do so.
Currently, the group meets twice monthly on the first and third Tuesday of the month. Sessions vary between being community based and more skills based: eg counselling skills or self defense.
The theory behind the group aligns with principles of community psychology – whereby we are not only helping an individual, but also networking with their community in order to facilitate greater inclusion. We also focus on the concept of social capital – the value of an individual’s social networks. Research findings show that the greater the level of social capital, the less the likelihood of depression (Webber and Huxley). It is also seen that an increase in social capital is associated with improvements in quality of life (Webber 2011). We see that individuals in the general population have higher levels of social capital than individuals with a diagnosis of serious mental illness. This is why so much emphasis is put on forging new links and relationships. Volunteers and members alike are encouraged to share their own experiences and connections (within suitable boundaries) to maximise the benefit to the group.
The club is free to join and no personal budget is required.
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