Latest News Creativity and Innovation - Groups in Lockdown Our group based projects are all about getting together to learn skills, have fun and make sure that people with learning difficulties and/or autism can be seen, be heard and belong in wider society. Faced with not being able to meet up, we are proving that with a bit of innovation, creativity and flexibility people can still work together to be seen, be heard and belong! Music and Media Tom has been recording and delivering drum tutorials online. People are adapating these using pots and pans where they don't have a kit at home. A great way to let out frustration and stress and help keep grounded in lockdown. "Frank has worked with Thomas teaching drum rhythm videos - they are brilliant!" - Isabelle, Frank's mum Steve, adapted his songwriting workshop and ran it online. The following session focused on developing the lyrics, structure and adding some chords and melody. The group continue to develop the song and plan to recording a version on Zoom. We will be releasing it on here so keep an eye out to be the first to hear it! "It worked really well. By the end of the first session, we had a set of lyrics to a song which has been titled 'Isolation Maybe'" - Steve, Director of Arts and Education Our Amplified team interviewed musician, Jemma Freeman, on Zoom. Group members Carmen and Tom were natural in their interview technique and led the hour long interview, which focused on how the current situation is affecting musicians. To prepare for the interview, Tom had listened to the album, watched the videos and lined up some great questions. The interview will be aired on Dover Community Radio as an addition of our radio show, 'Audiobox', along with some tracks from Jemma Freeman and the Cosmic Something's album. We plan to make a longer edit for uploading to Mixcloud and sharing on our social media and website - stay tuned for this and more interviews! Members of our Music and Arts Project also facilitated an online Open Mic on 5th May. It went really well but only attracted people from bemix. We plan to hold another event and hope to see more people from the wider community getting involved. "I like singing. It cheers my up!" - Sam, bemix member Discovery Catering We have been using different ways of keeping in touch to make sure that everyone is still able to connect. We have a Messenger group on which we have been sharing our walks and cooks and funny things that have happened, our thoughts and feelings too. We have been meeting every week on Zoom. Each week we have been sharing an idea of something to make. This has included making salt dough models to practice our dough making skills. Emma, made a rainbow to show support for the NHS [pictured below]. The next week Miranda made a video to show us how to make rocky road treats. Lots of us tried that recipe - a sweet treat was just what we needed to keep our spirits up! Ann Marie made a video to show how to make cupcakes and add your own flavour. [Pictured below: Henry with his Rocky Road] "We don’t know how long this is going on for so we are busy trying to think of ideas to support each other" - Karen, Project Lead - Discovery Catering We have been collecting and swapping recipes, thinking of ideas for writing articles for the website and social media and writing quiz questions to help us learn about healthy eating and food hygiene. This has been a great opportunity to spend time thinking about the connections between growing food, cooking and eating it, and what we do with the waste. Our next project is to see what we can grow by collecting and planting seeds and shoots from food scraps - volunteer, Alice, showed us a celery plant she grew from the end of an old bunch of celery [pictured below]. Miranda is also going to show us how to make a bird feeder using recycled materials. Eco Shed The Eco Shed team has been spending lock-down time looking back over good times and catching up with one another by phone. We have been sharing photos of people's work on our Facebook page, making sure that we are still seen. The group has focused on using creativity to keep well. Along with spending time relaxing with family, watching TV, doing puzzles and reading, project members have continued to use their time to make things and nurture their creativity. Some of the things people have made include quilts, teddies, puppets and artwork. Carrying on the green theme from the Eco Shed, people have also been gardening, planting seeds and wildlife spotting. Grant has been working in his garden. He made a bird box in the Eco Shed and has taken some time during lock down to paint it and install it in his garden. [Pictured below left: Grant with one of his bird boxes in the Eco Shed. Pictured below right: Grant's newly painted bird box in his garden] We were delighted to hear from David that he found birds nesting in a bird box that he recently made at the Eco Shed. There are 7 eggs! [Pictured below] What would have been a bit of old wood rotting somewhere has been turned into a bird box, and is now home to a little bird family. "I feel like a dad and can't wait to watch them grow" - David, Eco Shed member Can you identify what species of bird the eggs are? Have you got birds hatching in your Eco Shed bird box? When he was gardening, Stewart spotted a slow worm. Slow worms are not actually worms (or snakes) but are legless lizards. They are a protected species. You can find out more about them from our friends at Kent Wildlife Trust. We will be updating this page as we have more news - keep checking back!