Feel Good Drumming was set up by OT and Community choir leader Lisa Strong who wanted to bring the community of Walton something unique, and to help reduce social isolation.
The ethos of Feel Good Drumming is about bringing the community together through shared rhythm, whilst encouraging residents, who don’t normally participate in organised activities, to get out and about. The sessions, that take place in Walton-on-the-Naze, have a spiritual element, but ultimately it is about having fun, enjoying yourself and moving more no matter your ability.
The relaxed and informal environment creates an atmosphere where participants feel comfortable to learn, without added pressure of standing our from the crowd and instead offers a safe place for members to express themselves. The sessions focus on mindful drumming and games and activities that help elevate mood and sense of belonging. Feel Good Drumming is a project that has been set up to appeal to many in the community, but especially those who may be struggling with addiction, poor mental health, physical conditions and loneliness.
Lisa said: “I received funding from the Essex Local Delivery Pilot to purchase the drums, a place to store them and some training. When Covid-19 hit this year I needed to adapt and use innovative methods. I set up outdoor drumming circles including a women’s circle on the beach and have since applied for two trailers to pull the drums along to these more remote areas. They outdoor sessions have been so successful and will now be a regular summers evening activity next year.”
“Originally the group was set up in a local church hall and I quickly realised one group wasn’t going to be enough! So I ran 2 groups of 12 per week. The circle included young teens with ADHD and older people with physical, mental health and fatigue issues. Many members had not been involved in group activities or hadn’t participated in activity for a very long time. I was so pleased to welcome a lady to the group who hadn’t left the house for months but had made the journey despite her mobility issues to be a part of our circle on the beach. I cant wait to get back to the group in the new year and increase the group as well as bring the drumming to other groups I the community. Massive thank you to the LDP for helping me to get this far with the project.”