At Spring to Life we recognise that there are many pathways towards wellness. All people are different in what works for them and gives them healing. We also see the need to allow people to try out new approaches and therapies, which they may have never considered.
As such, we offer a wide range of well-being modalities which fall into four categories. Each of these benefit people in a variety of ways:
In addition to this we run specific projects related to community well-being: Fruit and Nut Village, Food Forest Brum and Mother Gardens.
We believe in the interconnectedness between personal, interpersonal, community, and planetary well-being. This approach is reflected in how our different projects and therapies may weave into one another.
This well-being wheel illustrates our entire programme. Click on the wheel to view fully:
We have a number of counsellors that use a range of different models suiting different people. Counselling can be of immense benefit to help people work through stresses and difficult times, and for gaining an understanding of their emotions.
Explores topics of the group’s choosing, from subjects including anger, confidence, stress, anxiety and depression. In these groups people get to learn methods for managing difficult emotions. Through group discussions people also gain increased self-awareness and connection, with the added benefit of contributing to the well-being of others.
Reading for well-being
Through the form of reading within a group, the mind can be calmed, refocused and relieved of stress. People come together to read and listen to stories and poems. Space is created throughout the session to explore and discuss themes in the literature which may reflect aspects of our own lives. This is also an opportunity for people to interact and socialise.
Tree of Life
A therapeutic intervention developed by psychologists in Africa initially for children and young people, it has now been successfully used with adults to help them identify their strengths, abilities, hopes and dreams, reconnect with their roots and relationships, and think about the ‘storms of life’ from a position of strength.
The basic philosophy behind Strengths Finder is that everyone has natural talents and that we’ll get the farthest in life if we focus on elevating our personal strengths, rather than trying to balance out our weaknesses. Through an online-questionnaire people are able to find out a comprehensive list of what their natural strenghts and talents are, and are then able to explore with our Strenghts Finder practitioner how to put these strenghts to best use in life.
Art for well-being
Art making can help people explore, communicate and make sense of their experiences. You don’t have to be “good at art” to benefit from sessions. People have the opportunity to use different methods and materials to express themselves. There’s growing evidence to show that participation in creative activities can improve well-being.
Poetry and Rhyming
These are poetry and rhyming worksops for all age ranges and abilities. Previously short-listed as Birmingham Poet Laureate, Kurly has a fun approach to working with people, enabling those who are shy to offer more of themselves in a fun, creative and therapeutic way.
Drama for Well-being
Using drama games and fun workshops, we aim to empower and build confidence in ourselves and others, whilst helping to put a voice to our thoughts, feelings, opinions to make sense of our world. For the participants, the key skills that are strengthened are confidence, self awareness, acceptance of self and others, emotional intelligence, trust, and responsibility.
This is an ancient practice with immense therapeutic benefits. It uses rhythm to promote healing and self-expression. Being part of a drumming group can give you a sense of connection with others and boost your self-esteem, as you become part of and contribute towards a collective rhythmic experience.
Dance and Movement
Creatively explores thoughts, feelings and emotions using movement as a tool for expression. The mind and body are connected and movement can unlock emotions in ways that verbal therapies might not be able to. It addresses emotional, social, cognitive and physical issues and can be a great way to increase self confidence and realise creative potential. The movement can be big or small and no previous dance experience is necessary.
A floor gym programme thatpromotes brain‐body connections. It relaxes and activates the body, and clears the mind. It also draws on yoga and Pilates. It can help you: gain body awareness combat a sedentary lifestyle, stay fit as an elder, release stress, and rehabilitate your body.
A technique using gentle hands on therapy to help the body to heal itself naturally. Bowen is helpful for reducing excessive muscle tension and helping a person to feel calmer and more centred. It is also effective with many other muscular conditions.
Uses touch to support healing and balancing of the whole person. Relieving tension and stimulating areas of weakness in the body may lead to relaxation and relief from aches and pains. ‘Feeling good in your skin’ can support emotional balance, promoting new self awareness, and feelings of well being, self worth and self esteem.
Our dietitian offers either one to one consultations or group advice sessions around healthy eating, nutrition and physical well-being. The quality of our diets can have a significant impact on both our mental and physical well-being.
Gardening can be of great benefit to our psycho-emotional health. From nurturing a plant from seed, touching soil, doing some heavy digging, working as part of a team, being surrounded by plants, to the joy of seeing a garden space you have created thrive with colour and food. Gardening has been shown to have immense value to improving well-being. Spring to Life is linked with a number of allotment projects and community gardens around the city.
We organise trips to nature areas within and around Birmingham, giving people an opportunity to find peace through connection with nature. Being in nature can have a positive impact on our well-being by reducing stress, and improving mood. We aim to familiarise people with particular nature areas, in order for them to visit these in the future independantly of us.
We work with groups to engage in supporting wildlife habitats and biodiversity, through different conservation activities. The well-being factors in this are: the experience of being immersed in nature and wildlife rich environments, actively working to support life of the planet, as well as all the benefits that gardening itself brings. We often work in sites of great natural beauty that are rich in biodiveristy.
These projects aim to help create more cohesion and resilience in our communities. The practices that underpin these may also have benefits to the individual and the planet.
Food Forest Brum
We are working with local communities around Birmingham to create permanent edible landscapes. This entails planting fruit trees, nut trees, fruit shrubs, perennial vegetables and herbs in different public and semi-public spaces, such as parks, community gardens, allotments, supported housing projects. This idea is to involve as many people as possible in creating local food spaces for the benefit of people in the here and now and the future. Click here for more information.
A project aiming to create more connection within and across communities through mutual aid and diversity. We are developing a network of food growing projects and individual gardeners who grow and share beneficial plants with one another. Through this network people are then able to inject and share other beneficial initiatives and resources to many communities in Birmingham and surrounding areas. Other Spring to Life well-being programmes for instance have been delivered to certain Mother garden sites such as community centres and mental health projects. Click here for more information
Fruit and Nut Village
Focussing on specific locations in Birmingham, and starting with Stirchley, we are working with neighbourhoods to develop their local green spaces into permanent food spaces adopting a range of approaches and plantation types, including orchards, forest gardens, trained fruit trees and nut groves. This is a partnership project between our Food Forest Brum project and Lets Grow Together. For more information click here.
CAN – Community Anchoring Networks
CAN is Spring to Life’s social prescribing initiative. We connect people to the network of projects, services and opportunities in and around Birmingham. Where necessary we can provide active support to access and engage with these. In Birmingham itself there is a wealth of initiatives and organisations doing splendid work to support people’s well-being in a range of ways. We also help people access Spring to Life’s own community projects and services.
These are a set of methods used to create greater harmony between people, which can also help in improving self-awareness and self-acceptance. It involves showing people how to get a sense of the feelings and needs of others as well as themselves, in order to then develop empathy, self-empathy and connection.