Coffee n’ Laughs< Back to Shortlist

A weekly friendship group in a multicultural and diverse area of Newport, Coffee n' Laughs supports participants experiencing isolation and depression with positive creative activities including textiles, embroidery, and hand-bound books.

The age range is wide ranging, from 16 to 76 and is run by volunteers. The cultural heritage of participants are Bangladeshi, Pakistani, White Welsh, African, Somalian, Iranian, Eastern European and Chinese. Coffee n’ Laughs is a lifeline for members who have suffered difficult lives, and it tackles isolation problems and depression by participating weekly and engaging in creative activities.

Following a six-month project called 'Maindee Stories' in collaboration with local designers, the project created a 3-panel interactive textile artwork which celebrated friendship and diversity, with women sharing textile skills from India and Pakistan.

Participants have developed from a position of not having picked up needle and thread since they were in high school, to producing outstanding work. Participants have developed their own designs and use of colour. The group is now using electro-conductive thread to make interactive portraits so that their stories are released by touch.


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