A popular local mental health charity is inviting Cumbernauld citizens to come along to a new free weekly group to learn a range of musical and other skills from next week onwards.
Fool On, a North Lanarkshire organisation which promotes recovery from mental health issues through performing arts, is providing free workshops including guitar, bass, piano, singing, comedy and songwriting lessons every Thursday from 1.00pm-3.00pm at Cornerstone House (1 Esk Walk, Cumbernauld, G67 1BZ).
The group, which is delivered in a relaxed atmosphere with an emphasis on support and fun, begins on Thursday 9 September 2021 and is for anyone aged 16 and over. Participants range from absolute beginners to people with more advanced skills, with an open invitation extended to all adults.
In addition to the new Cumbernauld Group, Fool On will also host parallel Thursday afternoon sessions at Orbiston Neighbourhood Centre (Busby Road, Bellshill, ML4 2BW) as of the same date.
Fool On was started by a group of individuals who had a lived experience of a mental health issue, and who also had an interest in the performing arts. The organisation focusses on the positives of how creative writing, comedy and music can play an important role in helping people recover from and cope with illnesses such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, panic attacks and much more.
In this respect, the charity facilitates an array of workshops across North Lanarkshire and online. These workshops provide a space for people to learn a musical instrument, singing, stand up comedy, musical theory, playing in a band, recording techniques and other practical skills.
By coming along to the group, participants are not pressurised or asked to share any information about their mental health with others. Indeed, for those who enjoy performing, opportunities exist to take part in organised Fool On comedy and music shows. Current music bands supported by Fool On include Free4All, a party band which performs popular songs at various fundraisers and events, and Darker Shade, which covers more advanced rock music.
People from Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and surrounding villages who wish to support the charity are also encouraged to come along to a Fool On fundraising evening on Friday 1 October 2021 from 7.00pm at The Club (76 Newarthill Street, Motherwell, ML1 5JH). Tickets cost £5 and can be booked online by clicking here. Mary McNeil, Development Manager at Cornerstone House Centre, said:
“Everyone has mental health and it’s important to take care of it. Mental health problems affect around one in four people in any given year. They range from common problems such as depression and anxiety, to rarer issues such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
“It doesn’t matter how successful you are or how much you seemingly have going for you in life; mental health problems can strike anyone. It’s not a sign of weakness or failure in any way, it’s an illness. And like any illness or injury, with the right treatment things can get better and you can become stronger again.
“That’s why, as part of Cumbernauld Community Health Information Hub, Cornerstone House Centre is delighted to welcome Fool On to its community hub premises to host an exciting new weekly Cumbernauld group from this September.
“This is an excellent provision for people from Cumbernauld experiencing a mental health issue who are looking to meet new people and learn new skills in a safe, supportive and friendly environment.”
Meanwhile, Cornerstone House Centre continues to be an advocate of helping the people of Greater Cumbernauld to improve their mental health. To this end, the organisation is a provider of free courses such as Living Life to the Full, an award-winning programme which aims to support people experiencing low mood, depression and anxiety by using the approach of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).