Crafts and Hobbies club for those with and without disabilities

Crafts and Hobbies club for those with and without disabilities

The West Norfolk Phobbies club, based in Dersingham, began in 1986.

The aim was to enable people across the area to enjoy crafts and hobbies without having to travel to King’s Lynn, where a Phobbies club had already been established. Now the King’s Lynn club has closed so the tables have turned and people travel in the opposite direction to join us. We have members from King’s Lynn to Hunstanton and beyond.

Having a disability can be very isolating. A club like Phobbies provides an opportunity to meet others where everyone is accepted. Many people even without any disability can become socially isolated for all sorts of reasons. Helping at a club like this can change their lives. A few years ago, a widow and a widower who both joined as helpers became friends and they are now happily married!

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There are lunch clubs and other opportunities to meet, but most don’t provide the satisfaction of learning a skill and of creating something either useful or attractive. Managing to knit a garment or paint a picture can be very rewarding. Taking home something you have made yourself even if you have limited ability can boost your self-esteem. Helping others less able is also hugely rewarding and sometimes seeing others who are more disabled than oneself can put one’s own troubles into perspective.

We meet every Thursday between 10 am and 2 pm with members enjoying several different craft-based hobbies. We have painters of all abilities, knitters, crocheters, rug makers and a variety of paper-based crafts. We used to have woodworkers and glass engravers and we would willingly accommodate any craft providing we could get the skilled helpers. Although the craftwork is important the company of others and a chance to talk, and laugh, is equally valuable and in some cases even more so.

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We currently have 19 regular attendees, 10 men and 9 women. There is a blurred line between those who have a disability and those who don’t. Although some have greater needs, others have milder problems and can help others. We are actively looking to recruit more members especially those who are able enough to help others.

We meet at Dersingham Social club every Thursday from 10 am to 2 pm. We bring packed lunches. The weekly subscription is £2 and covers the cost of tea or coffee. If you are interested, please contact Maggie on 07967 799816.

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