Having a phab time

A group of volunteers have set up a new inclusive social group in Selston.

The group ‘Im Phab’ met for the first time on Wednesday and enjoyed lots of fun activities at the Methodist Chapel on Chapel Road.

The title stands for Involving people with Mental health issues, and learning difficulties, together with Physically Handicapped and Able Buddies.

I’m Phab has been organised by Councillor Christine Quinn-Wilcox with the help of Sue Boswell and June Heald (B.E.M), and with support from county councillor David Martin.

Coun Quinn-Wilcox said; ”Our aim is to bring together people who suffer from their ‘ailments’ and who often feel left out of the usual groups within our community. “It’s for all ages. No-one is excluded.”

Activities include a variety of games, quizzes, and background music, with singing and dancing, along with a quiet area for reading books/magazines and a very large jigsaw, which will be renewed each time it’s completed.

There is also the opportunity for people to just sit and chat. Refreshments are served, courtesy of the local Co-op.

Coun Wilcox added: “The first session went fabulously. Everyone enjoyed themselves and got involved - there were people aged from their 30s to nearly 90 years old.

“They danced and sang or hummed along to the music. “People were dancing who have not done it for years because they are disabled. We set it up to recognise that there are people out there who are isolated from a lot of things that are happening in the village.

“They might want to play bingo or take part in a raffle but they don’t feel comfortable going to some other groups.

“Some might not want to play bingo and feel that they don’t fit in or feel shy about going and feeling the odd one out.”

Lifts can be arranged if transport is a problem. Volunteers will bring people and take them back home as well if need be.

The group will be involving advisors from interest groups, inckluding Everyone Active who will be coming to sessions talk about the importance of excercise for a healthy body and mind.

Coun Quinn-Wilcox added: “We also intend to organise outings, meals out, and anything - within reason - that they suggest. It is their group, not ours.“This week they said they wanted to put me in the stocks and throw wet sponges at me.” Sessions are held at the Methodist Chapel, in Chapel Road, Selston, on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month, 1-3pm.