What is the Men’s group at Caswell Clinic?
The group aims to provide a safe space for men to belong; to explore aspects of our relationships, health and wellbeing, distress and illness, hopes and expectations and the world around us. For some months, we have been working through letters of the alphabet. With a different letter assigned each week, we have explored various topics and sampled different foods that start with that letter. Topics vary greatly and may include: current affairs, life goals, common problems, relationship issues. Occasionally, we may wish to invite guests to the group. We have welcomed Jess, a story teller, to facilitate a session which was enjoyed by all.
The Men’s group also hopes to undertake some practical activities. For example we are planning to construct an outside seating area for group to meet and that will benefit the wider clinic.
What is the format of the group?
The Men’s group meets every Thursday morning (1130ish) for an hour for informal discussion and to share coffee and a snack. The format of the group is flexible and we usually spend the first 10 minutes for general introductions, to get a drink and get comfortable. The seats are arranged in a circle, which everyone is encouraged to join. Any escorting staff members are encouraged to take part in the group and to be included.
Who attends the group?
This group is open to all male patients in Caswell Clinic. Typically attendance comprises around 5-8 patients and 2-3 staff members (usually all male). Many of these are regular attendees.
How is the group evaluated?
The Men’s group is not formally recorded and typically discussions that take place stay between group members. The group facilitators receive monthly supervision. Otherwise, the group is continually evaluated by its members on a week by week basis.
Men’s group is going well. We have a good turnout every week at the cafe on a Thursday at 11 am. Every week we use different letters of the alphabet. Week one beginning with the letter A. We also have a selection of foods depending on the letter as they change from week to week. We use the letter of the week to raise a variety of interest and topics. We are also planning and have started making benches and a table in the concrete workshop to make a chill out zone in the corner of the garden. The seated area can be used for a number of things such as bird-watching, reading groups, chat groups or for patients wishing to spend some time alone.
Thanks to Dan , Nick and Alex for their help and support in the project and the men’s group.