Today, the first meeting of the Bradford Clubhouse start group took place at The Storehouse in Bradford.
There were six of us in total, James, Lorna, Caroline, Mel and Paul and me, Pete. All of from diverse backgrounds with experience of using services, delivering services, involvement with political parties, knowledge of the third sector and much much more.
We started by saying hello and answering the question, when was the last time you danced, and it turns out we are all movers, in the kitchen, the gym, the bathroom and Flares (the nightclub).
We talked for two hours, initially I talked about my understanding of the Clubhouse model, and then we shared ideas, thoughts, opportunities and the time passed quickly.
Some of our conclusions were;
the flier needs more colour and inspiring copy
there is a need to spread the word and recruit people to the start up group
we need a formal structure for meetings
We also talked about other services in Bradford like MIND, Cellar Trust, BAMHAG and Hive and wondered how a Clubhouse would fit in. Money came up of course, the Clubhouse will need income and start up funds, none of us had a firm idea of how to get this, but we had a few starting points and contacts to call upon.
For me this was an exciting moment. People came to talk about this idea, after a couple of weeks of publishing a brief article about Bradford Clubhouse. The six of are busy with family/work/health problems, however we took some time out to travel to meet up and consider starting something new and exciting for us and for Bradford.
Please pass this story on to anyone who has an interest in mental health, the more people who know about Bradford Clubhouse, the more chance we have to make it a reality.