We’ve been supporting residents, staff and relatives in Essex to get creative and keep connected this past year.

As restrictions ease, we’ve been able to offer face-to-face alongside online sessions to ensure residents and staff at The Willows Care Home have regular access to artist-led creative workshops to help wellbeing.

During the past few months the group, known as the Artful Willows, have explored a range of activities including ceramics, watercolour painting, theatre and print-making and more. The funding, from The National Lottery Community Fund, also saw residents and staff from the Canford Healthcare-run venue, visit Walton-on-the-Naze to gain inspiration for some creative activities.

Resident Peggy said "doing these activities make me feel good, like I've achieved something" while Iris added: "I've surprised myself with all these things I've been able to do. You're never too old to learn something new!”

Recent sessions saw pupils from Crowland's School team up with residents to create alongside each other with both expressing they’d love to do more workshops together.