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The Shaw Mind Foundation launched its Breathe community programme and is calling for volunteers

A mental health and wellbeing charity is calling for volunteers to give some of their time to support healthy minds in Newark.

The Shaw Mind Foundation, based in the town, launched its Breathe community programme in July 2019, and has already supported more than 1,000 people, with many signposted to other support services.

The charity relies on donations and the support of its volunteers to run the five weekly Breathe Café and Breathe Pop-up sessions, which take place at LetsXcape Together in the Buttermarket, Newark College, and the Turquoise Teapot on Bowbridge Road.

Breathe Cafe (27714233)
Breathe Cafe (27714233)

To support more people, Su Hallam,the charity’s manager, is asking local businesses to dedicate some volunteer days and members of the community with some spare time, to join the thriving volunteer team.

Su Hallam said: “Our volunteers come from all walks of life. Some have mental health and wellbeing experience, but most simply have a passion for making a difference.

“Locally, I think there has been a real shift in people’s awareness of the need for mental health and wellbeing support and this is a great opportunity for people to have a positive impact in the Newark area.

“In exchange for their time, we provide all our volunteers with full training and ongoing support, so they are, in turn, able to support people within their communities.”

On Thursday, February 20, Su Hallam and some current volunteers will be at The Shaw Mind Foundation Centre, on Millgate, Newark, to host a volunteer open day, from 10am to 3pm, for people to find out more.

Businesses that can give volunteer daysare invited to get in touch via enquiries@shawmindfoundation.org or pop in during the open day.

Amy, who has volunteered at the Breathe Café since it opened, said: “There is nothing else like Breathe available out there for people who feel they need some support.

“It’s a big step for them to come through the door to talk to us, but it’s a privilege when you start to build that trust ­— it feels really good.

Volunteers with a current, valid DBS check and previous experience are preferred, but those with an interest in making a difference and some time to spare are also encouraged to sign up. Volunteer expenses are paid.

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