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Art in the Community: Hospice in the Weald

For social impact week we volunteered at Hospice in the Weald, in Pembury. Here, we learnt to build relationships with outpatients, through the use of therapeutic arts. We got to know the patients, and took the opportunity to listen, and learn from them as they reflected on their memories.

During our time at the Hospice, we were given a tour of the building, and learnt about the different types of support and services the charity offers. The tour included a beautifully tranquil quiet room for the use of patients and family to reflect, and a wonderful garden run entirely by volunteers. We were told about all the 5 services that the hospice offered, this included: Day service, Ward service, Hospice at home, Counselling service, Cottage hospice (being introduced in 2020).

Through collaborative clay work, we were able to build informal relationships with patients. Collectively, we shared skills and ideas. The clay was a brilliant platform to encourage patients to reflect on some of their dearest memories, and as a result, we learnt some really interesting things about some of the patients lives. The use of Art as a tool for expression, meant that our interactions with patients didn’t feel too formal, but more like a friendly conversation.