As part of Genesis Life Projects, we run a number of courses for our clients (guests) including Cooking, Art as Therapy and Music Therapy. These courses are usually run by one of our experienced staff or a qualified practitioner. But over the last few months, we have had a few courses hosted by our very own guests. 

Tim’s Mindful Crafting Sessions 

Tim began coming to Genesis Life Projects about a year ago to use our facilities, get advice and join us for meals. He has continued to come most weeks and participated in a few courses we run. Tim often makes little origami sculptures, leaving them around for people to enjoy or take home. He finds it calming.  

Last autumn Tim shared his story with pupils at Prior Park College and the experience had a real impact on him. Wanting to do something more, we suggested he ran a one-off crafting session, using some of the skills he already had to share with others. This was so successful that a 3-session course followed, which Tim was paid to run. Tim is planning to run a further course, once he’s settled into his long-awaited new home. 



Tim shared, ‘Being given the chance to run craft workshops for Genesis has been a wonderful opportunity for me. It really helped my confidence and allowed me to connect with this amazing community in a new and special way. Craft brings me peace and is my ‘mindfulness’. Being able to share that gift and watch other people slow down and have that sense of serenity for a couple of hours is a gift in itself. It warms my heart and recharges my spiritual batteries. I am very grateful to Genesis and the people within it.’ 

Creative Writing with Greg 

Creative writing courses have been part of Genesis Life Project’s programme for a long time, each run by different volunteers and practitioners. But never has a session been run by a guest before. Greg is a regular at Genesis Life Projects who comes for meals, one-to-ones and has attended some courses. The team knew he was a keen writer, but when they asked if he’d like to lead a creative writing session he said, ‘why would anyone come?’ Convinced to try by the team, he planned and delivered a one-off session, but was very nervous. The feedback was so positive, Greg planned another 4-session course, which he was paid for. The course was one of the best attended creative writing courses we’ve ever run and all participants rated it ‘excellent.’  

Participants said,

Greg really encouraged everyone each session and it was an excellent group. We were all able to share. Thank you.

“Deeply enjoyable and I laughed. This is not to be overlooked!” 

I enjoyed expression through writing. Greg was a very patient with us all and a great and organized leader. I also met some new friends.

“Doing this course has completely rejuvenated my writing. I hadn’t written in a long time. I’ve met some great people and Greg is an outstanding teacher. We achieved loads but in a relaxed and creative environment.” 

Greg has certainly been encouraged by this feedback and now has the confidence to plan a 5-session course. This is booked in our calendar for April. 

Katherine’s nail salon 

Katherine has been part of the Genesis Life Project’s community for a long time. She holds many friendships with other guests and enjoys getting involved in different activities we run. When she comes to Genesis Life Projects, Katherine often has multicoloured nails with different patterns and designs which she’s done herself. So, we asked her if she wanted to run a session painting other guests’ nails. A poster was made to advertise and with her table set up and covered in every nail polish colour imaginable, Katherine painted people’s nails for two hours. She painted each nail with such care and attention, chatting with each of her ‘clients’ as she worked.  


Sue Fourie, Genesis Life Projects manager said, ‘It has been really exciting to watch these guests lead their sessions and courses using the skills they have. I’ve found it so encouraging to see them grow into their teaching and in confidence. We are building community here and everyone can be part of that, giving what they have to support one another. 

To find out more about Genesis Life Projects please read our yearly Snapshot articles or visit our news page for more stories.