Looking After Number One (LANO) is a project that has been in planning and development for just under two years. It has grown organically from Magic Carpet Trustees' and workers' interests, skills and knowledge.
The intention for t
his project is to support participants' capacity: for self-awareness; to build positive and beneficial relationships; and for lasting engagement in the community around them.

Through an iterative process (make>try>review>re-make>etc), we have designed a practical workbook and series of workshops that help participants to review their own values, find and recognise their potential role in the community and to be supported to take part in positive and low-impact activities together and in groups. 
LANO is intended to support people who are socially isolated and/ or lonely to engage in and develop an interest in the community around them, and to discover what is on their doorstep, here in Exeter.

Through the first series of workshops, the project created a self-help workbook (now on its second version). People who have supported the design and creation process are from all walks of life - healthcare professionals, educators, people with lived experience of low mental health, coaches, lone parents and creatives amongst others. Every one has brought unique insight and experience and made this a rich and positive experience and resource.

We are very aware that a one-size-fits-all approach will never benefit everyone, that people are complex and unique, they may have compound issues and health conditions that effect them in many different ways. This project is about providing people with tools and experiences that can support a personal journey towards better health and relationships and where to find them.

For the next stage of this project we are running a series of online workshops. They will involve looking at the workbook (we will mail a copy out to people), reviewing and working through the exercises together. They will also feature a series of inspirational guest speakers and activity leaders. We won't be asking people to do anything too revealing or potentially upsetting, but it will be a safe space for reflection and questioning. Everyone in these sessions (the same across this whole project) is considered as equal and we value experience rather than qualifications or job titles.

We hope that people will come along for all 12 workshops, but we won't pressure you if you don't feel up for it sometimes. We understand that change can only come from within and that this can be hard. By coming on a journey with peers - people who understand where you come from and the challenges you face - we can build resilience and hopefully make some friends along the way.

The project is being fronted by Stuart Crewes, who has 15 years' experience in making and delivering fun and engaging workshops and groups for all sorts of people in all sorts of situations. He has a great sense of humour but is also sensitive to participants' needs and concerns. You are welcome to get in touch for a 1-to-1 chat with him before coming along. We're also happy for you to have support to attend, but will insist that everyone 'in the room' takes part fully in what we're doing!

So, what are you waiting for?

[email protected]