Spoon carving with Roots to Recovery

Roots to recovery- A partnership by Mind Pembrokeshire and Pembrokeshire national Park, has sent quite a few groups of participants to the Milkwoods to engage in a variety of activities. They support groups from a few Pembrokeshire and the first group enjoyed my demonstrating how to turn a bowl on the pole lathe. While we drank tea sat around the fire I gave each in the group the opportunity to have a go at turning. Some were a little hesitant but after one participant successfully made a few lovely curly shavings the rest were a more enthusiastic and confident enough to have a go. Within the hour between us a bowl was made, and after lunch we went for a walk through the woods.

Later that afternoon in demonstrated how to use a whittling knife, Sloyd as it’s also known. Safety being a prime directive we have Kevlar gloves in various sizes for participants to wear while using the Sloyd. After demonstrating how to use the blade safely to remove material from a selected piece of branch wood everyone successfully made a coat hook to bring home with them. The feedback was very positive- “Incredibly therapeutic and enjoyable, so nice to see people engrossed in the moment”.

On another accessions Roots to Recovery came and enjoyed a variety of activities, one of which was spoon carving. Again the day started with making tea to go with the scones, using the fire to boil the kettle while those not familiar with the space have a chance to settle down and be comfortable and familiarise themselves with our surroundings. We have groups with a wide variety of abilities but it’s important for all be be included and have the satisfaction of not just engaging with what we’re doing but succeeding in achieving what we’ve set out to do. And with as much or as little support needed all those who came to participate were again immersed in what we were doing, with me demonstrating each step then helping those that wanted it.

Again at the end of the day all who came achieved what we set out to do and again the feedback was very positive-“Everybody was totally engrossed, for the first time the entire group was silent as we all carved and took home a spoon that they made themselves, and several participants including one of the staff were so inspired that they now own the tools needed and have taken up spoon carving as a hobby”.