We Grow Strong is the first Across the Lines project being rolled out. Phase 1 was delivered in conjunction with the North Leitrim Men’s Group (based in the Bee Centre, Manorhamilton) in May /June 2017. The programme brought men together, from around the border region, north and south, to work together on life storytelling, facilitated by the brilliant writer in residence, Michael Patrick McDonald.
North Leitrim Men’s Group in Manorhamilton who took the lead on identifying participants in Manorhamilton area and who partnered with the Enniskillen Men’s Shed (Action Mental Health). The project engaged 20 + men, with sessions being delivered both in the Bee Centre in Manorhamilton and in Men’s Shed in Enniskillen. Transport was provided to enable the cross border working and both organisations provided lunch for all participants as part of the workshop programme.
Storytelling Facilitation by the Author Michael Patrick McDonald
A ‘transformative storytelling’ programme was developed by the experienced writer and group facilitator Michael Patrick McDonald. We were delighted to have Michael Patrick McDonald work here having previously implemented the programme with various groups in Boston dealing with various kinds of life experiences including trauma.
The purpose of the We Grow Strong programme was to support individuals within a group setting, through thoughtful storytelling and listening exercise – to be able to reflect upon and share personal story in ways which supported individuals to have ownership and control of the narratives about their own lives.
The Glens Centre is thankful for all the work undertaken by the participants, and the efforts of partner organisation North Leitrim Men’s group and Action Mental Health in making the project happen and for the creative and thoughtful inputs by Michael Patrick McDonald.
A second phase of the programme is being developed for early 2018.