Animal therapy is poised to help even more in need

A new peer support group based in Dukinfield is offering animal-assisted get-togethers for adults recovering from eating disorders.

Noah's ART is a non-profit therapy service that incorporates animals into its approach. 

Dogs, rabbits and reptiles are just some of the creatures that people can interact with.

The service is based out of The Together Centre in Dukinfield and has been for six years. 

However, they have an outreach service that has taken them into the local community, supporting people through mental and physical health difficulties.

Their newest peer support group is a safe space for people over the age of 18 who are in recovery from eating disorders. 

Catherine Hall created the group after her personal experience of not finding the support she needed for eating disorder recovery in Tameside and Glossop.

She said: “I wanted to create the thing I needed when I was first discharged from inpatient treatment. 

“At that point in my life, I started volunteering at Noah’s ART, which led to a job there, and that was instrumental in my own recovery.

“Noah’s ART believe that recovery involves finding a purpose and interest in life beyond the illness, so I hope the group will provide a supportive space for attendees to relax and enjoy themselves, as well as giving and receiving support from peers going through similar experiences.”

Members of the group will also be able to relax with therapy animals, take part in arts, crafts and other creative activities.

Those interested in attending are encouraged to contacted Catherine at catherine@noahs-art.co.uk or call at 075054 74390.

People will then go on to complete a registration form and have an informal chat with Catherine or an experienced mental health nurse to ensure the recovery group is the right place for them.

The Noah’s ART service has many other strands:

• One-to-one therapy and quiet zone for after school

• Specialist animal assisted education for children with autism and ADHD

• Bringing together a group of isolated people to develop local network supports

• Dog café and pet-assisted befriending for lonely and isolated individuals – (sadly on hold due to Covid-19 restrictions)

• Training and work placements for school students struggling with anxiety

• Animal inspired art activities

• Visiting care homes, hospitals and schools

• Training in animal welfare and volunteer support for adults needing additional support

• Developing online services

• Intergenerational links with local schools to provide a magazine full to the brim of animal stories and art work from local students providing contact and entertainment for care homes and isolated individuals.

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