Social enterprise ideas and plans

Creativity is everywhere though I have come across many people saying to me, “Oh I wish I could do that,” or, “I’m not creative,” then a while later read their thought provoking blog or watch them paint their nails with amazing patterns. To be creative doesn’t have to mean that you are a published writer or a talented artist. Creativity can be found in our everyday actions. I would like to help show people their creative sides and walk alongside them as it grows and develops. People sharing their creative projects can be a big inspiration for others and I would like to provide opportunities for them to showcase their work.

I have suffered from fibromyalgia from a young age. I found that having an illness that stops you from regularly attending school makes you different. Being different causes others to treat you differently. If you don’t have the illness or know someone close then it isn’t likely that you are going to know a lot about it and this often leads to stigma and discrimination. In my case fibromyalgia is known for its pain. This is one of the many symptoms, the worst part for me is the way it affects my mental health. It can make it very difficult to concentrate, it leaves me with no energy and can often leave me feeling very low. I have found that doing something creative can help lift me back up, giving me something to focus on and helps to relieve stress. I also have the experiences of my mum and dad. My mum has Functional Disorder, this illness has stopped her from doing many of the activities that she used to do. Making use of her creativity by designing jewellery and making lampwork beads has really helped her cope. My dad was an extremely hard working man who had to stop work because of M.E. After ten years he has now started to do some work at home with wire work silversmithing and web design. Our creativity has enabled us to work. The creative side of our work gives us something to focus on and helps relieve stress. Through the social enterprise I would like to help in advancing awareness of mental health issues and work alongside charities such as Beatbullying to help support young people that are being affected by unnecessary stress. I would like to help people find ways of using their creativity to relieve stress and help those that have become unemployed due to illness on their road to recovery and paid work.

The social enterprise will aim to offer the community a place to come together to create, learn, network, sell and source supplies.
To encourage skills swapping  and sharing of tools and materials.
To work with the local community advancing the understanding of mental health issues and offering a way of using creativity to relieve stress.
To help those that have become unemployed due to illness on their road to recovery and paid work.

I would like to set up an online magazine style website which will have articles on creativity, health and well-being and reviews. It will also have an area to list events and workshops, a directory which will be filled with creative businesses and suppliers and a weekly showcase of arts and crafts. I would like to organise creative fairs in our local area and in the future open up a gallery shop with studio space for workshops and office space for freelancers to hire.

At the moment I am having to take things slow due to my health and being pregnant. I will be making small steps towards launching the enterprise like making contacts, putting the directory together and showing basic details through Facebook and Twitter lists. If you have a story about using creativity to help with stress and health please do send it to me to be archived and added when we launch. If you are interested in getting involved in the running of things let me know and we can discuss this further.

For more information about how you can get involved please read this post.

Please email me if you would like to discuss anything further

8 Responses to “Social enterprise ideas and plans”
  1. Sounds excellent hun and I’ll be watching closely, as ever if you think I can help in any way just ask.

    Agree with the creativity – I was diagnosed as having Bipolar Affective Dissorder in 2005 – the one thing that has always lifted my mood is when I’m in the studio – I have been producing music now for 12 years!! love it.

    • myrustyhalos says:

      Thank you Daniel! If you’d like to write an article about living with bipolor and how using your creativity has helped that would be great. I’ve got a couple of articles that i’ll post at some point soon to give you an idea of what other people have covered. And help with spreading the word to help bring in creative people would be great!

      At the moment the support and encouragement you have given me is amazing, thank you!!

  2. I really admire your drive and enthusiasm. I don’t know where you find the time…

    One of my goals this year is to create awareness for the kind of support people with terminal illness (not just cancer) need. I work with a hypnotherapist but I would love to explore creativity as a means of support.

    A few years ago, I worked with an adult group with mental health issues, it was an art group, meeting once a week and we achieved very exciting results across all art media.

    Similarly, I helped with a dementia group, providing one-to-one and group support in a day care centre. Art therapy sessions were very successful, but so were story-telling and bread-making!

    Anyway, to cut a long story short, I would love to be involved in some way.

    Take care and best wishes,
    Lesley x.

    • myrustyhalos says:

      Thank you so much for your support Lesley! I had made a start on my own last year when things were rough and realised that to get anywhere i really need to have more people on board to help.

      I love hearing peoples stories about using creativity like this!

      I will keep the blog and twitter up to date with everything and please do email me if you have anything you’d like to chat about. It is going to be a slow process this time around, i’m going to take my time and get everything in place before launching.

      Take care and thank you again!
      Siobhan x

  3. Helen Neale says:

    Well done you! What a great idea, and I wish you every success – don’t drop the iPad in the toaster though will you? I have found my creativity is writing – and blogging is proving to be great for me in many, many ways. 🙂

    • myrustyhalos says:

      Thank you 🙂 haha it is the type of thing I could see me doing, will have to get a heat protector for it!

      I’ve found that the more I write in my blog the easier I find it each day to sit down and write something. I love how we can paint a picture with our words (like ipads popping out of toasters 🙂

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