EDP Swanage has a facelift

Peer Mentor, Malcolm, shares a bit about the recent refurbishment at EDP Swanage and why environment is important in recovery.

Group room 2“An area we looked at in the recent peer mentoring course, was how the environment impacts on the mentoring relationship. For example are the surroundings warm, clean, comfortable and distraction free. We also thought that as peer mentors we are supposed to be setting an example to clients on how to live.

The group room and hallway at the EDP Swanage Project looked like the inside of a tomb. It was dark and gloomy and smelled musty as it hadn’t been decorated in many years.

The project was given a donation from the husband of a client who passed away. This donation enabled us to purchase a new carpet and some lino for the group room.

I got involved in decorating the EDP Swanage Project.

A brighter colour scheme was agreed and the walls and ceiling of the group room were painted by Rachel, Amy and myself.

There were two huge soft board panels on the wall in the kitchen area.  We decided to remove these and everyone was amazed when two large windows were revealed. These windows have very old style steel window frames. One of these windows had two openings which had hand winders to open the windows – all of which were rusted solid. Luckily I was a mechanical engineer in a former life so I dismantled the mechanisms and got them working.

 The window frames and winders were cleaned and painted and the windows were coated in a translucent film which provided extra light. As this wall butts up to neighbours’ gardens this film provides confidentiality for clients using the group room. We are in the process of making a seascape mural on these windows by utilising pictures of fish we have cut out from books and magazines. The fish have been given speech bubbles containing mindfulness quotes which we have downloaded from the internet.

Most of the renovation is being done on a shoestring, an example of this was a brand new tin of white paint was found in the local second hand shop costing an exorbitant 50p.

 The woodwork, ie the doors and skirting boards, were cleaned rubbed down and painted. The front door and front windowframes were painted in a gloss EDP blue.

StairwayThe stairway to the second floor was very dark.  We got a quote from the carpet fitter but this proved to be too expensive. Therefore Judith and myself got on our knees and scrubbed all the stair treads. We painted the woodwork gloss white and the bannister rail EDP blue.

The washroom was in a very tired condition, Judith painted the walls from top to bottom, and it now looks much cleaner and brighter.

We have had a lot of positive feedback from clients regarding the condition of the group room and how it now gives them a good feeling. An open day was held at the Project, Thelma Barlow (Mavis Reilly from Coronation Street) and others invited guests from Swanage attended and all were impressed with the renovated Group room. I know of a number of Clients and workers who been inspired to decorate their own houses.

Therefore it has been a very rewarding and worthwhile exercise for the Staff and Clients old and new.”

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