Activities Remotely #7 St John's Foundation Est. 1174

Welcome to our 7th newsletter, packed full of activities and news for you to keep well at home.

This week we have recipes from Jamie Oliver, crafting ideas from Kirstie Allsopp, online games like Cribbage and Bridge, and lots more!

We do hope these weekly bulletins are going some way to help replace the loss you will be probably feeling at not being able to attend your usual face-to face activities.

Please also stay up to date with the latest news from St John’s by visiting our website and social media.

Jamie Oliver: Keep Cooking & Carry On

Jamie Oliver shows us some recipes, tips and hacks tailored for the unique times we're living in, including pork stir-fry, steamed dumplings, and best mate, Jimmy Doherty's ultimate roast beef sarnie.


Kirstie Allsopp: Keep Crafting & Carry On

Kirstie Allsopp shows us more crafts and skills to help us navigate these unique times. She makes a cool light box, a beautiful spring garland and a fun painted pebble game.


Online Bridge Games

The English Bridge Union (EBU) has a vast selection of games online, including:

  • Bridge Base Online
  • Bridge Club Live
  • FunBridge
  • No Fear Bridge

To find these games, please click the link below:


Online Cribbage Games

Cribbage, or crib, is a card game traditionally for two players, but commonly played with three, four or more. It involves playing and grouping cards in combinations which gain points.


Craft Box Subscriptions

Fancy doing something practical to keep busy? Craftiosity, Cosy Craft, and Makerly (amongst others) are offering monthly subscription boxes full of crafty ideas and projects for you to complete at home. It's worth noting that these subscriptions cost around £20-25 per month.

Craftiosity: https://craftiosity.co.uk/

Cosy Craft: https://www.cosycraft.club/

Makerly: https://www.makerlycrafts.com/gallery

A message from Stephen Magrath, tutor of Mindful Art and Meditation Facilitator classes in Bath

Please join us every Monday at 11am for a shared silence and stillness in the comfort of your home. Thank you to everyone sharing this half-an-hour time where we can simply be with each other in the peaceful presence of the Spirit. If the time doesn't suit you, practice the meditation when it does and perhaps share with others .

Please read the weekly reflection below and then hold the silence using a repetitive prayer word or focus on your breathing or a positive image to help avoid the inevitable thought-stream .

As mentioned previously, the desert fathers of the 3rd Century described contemplative prayer as 'the prayer of the heart ' through which one moves from thinking spiritual thoughts to being open to the Spirit . This experience cannot be forced into being and requires a patient surrender to the light much as a flower's blossoming. Hafez's poetic image perfectly describes this process of trust in letting go .

Poem by Hafez, Persian Poet, 1315-1390

May this Peace be with you ,


If you would like to receive these weekly emails direct, please respond to stephenmagrath@hotmail.com. If the group meeting time is not suitable, practice when you can.

Louise's Delicious Cauliflower Cheese (with leek!)

Louise, our tutor for The Supper Club, has sent us another delicious recipe to share. Why not try your hand at this Cauliflower Cheese (with Leek) which can be enjoyed as a side or as a main with vegetables.

Don't forget, if you want to share any recipes or pictures of what you've made you can contact us at community.outreach@stjohnsbath.org.uk

Innovations in Dementia & Alzheimer's Society Useful Links

These links are provided by Innovations in Dementia and Alzheimer's Society who are working in partnership to support those who need help in this difficult time.

'Innovations in Dementia' guides and makes short films featuring people with dementia to help volunteers interact, with deliveries, befriending and transport.


Alzheimer’s Society’s toolkit for COVID-19 volunteers:


Daily Hope

We're pleased to share with you Daily Hope. Daily Hope is a response to the nearly 3 million older people living in the UK who cannot access the internet and who now find themselves even more isolated and cut off from those around them. Many are struggling with anxiety and fear.

Please tell older people who you know about Daily Hope. It’s for people with no access to the internet. It’s a FREE phone line so that they can listen to hymns, prayers, daily reflections, and a choice of church services.

The phone number is 0800 804 8044.

Wildlife Trusts - Looking after yourself at home

Wildlife Trusts has some fantastic ideas for activities and projects that you can do from home:

  • Make a bird feeder
  • Build a hedgehog home
  • Make a mini nature reserve
  • Clean bird feeders
  • Make your own compost
  • Grow vegetables for wildlife
  • Make a butterfly feeder
  • Learn how to identify butterflies, bees, and moths
  • Make beeswax wraps
  • Make a nature mandala
  • Tune into their Wildlife Watch YouTube channel
  • Watch a webcam: peregrines, barn owls and kittiwakes are all putting on a show!

Click the link to see how to begin each project, or watch the webcams: https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/looking-after-yourself-and-nature

Wellbeing College B&NES

Wellbeing College B&NES is offering free, online sessions for individuals to take part in from the comfort of their own home. Using the free video chat application 'Zoom', you can get together and chat, stitch, paint, or just see a friendly face. Follow the links below to see what you can get involved in:

Knit and Natter

This is an opportunity to meet up on video link with your knitting or crochet and a cup of tea in a friendly, supportive group. An expert volunteer will be on hand to give advice and tips on knitting and crochet issues and they'll also try to find useful Youtube clips for people needing help. You are welcome to turn up for a chat even if they don't have knitting needles and wool to hand.


Exercise for Wellbeing

This friendly 6-week exercise class is for those looking to use physical activity to improve their mood. The programme is run by a friendly, welcoming tutor named Sam; he will take you through a routine each week to get your body moving.

There will be moves to suit all abilities and he will give you the option of easier or harder alternatives if you prefer. Exercises will be inclusive for all and vary in difficulty to suit everyones needs. You can expect HIIT (high intensity interval training) style workouts, body weight circuits and fun exercises to leave you feeling great!

All you'll just need is water and a mat, if you have one. There will be time at the end of the session to stay and ask questions and even share a cup of tea. Why not try something new and book your place now?


Wellbeing Support Group

Do you feel you need a little support during these uncertain times? Would you like to connect with others who may also be feeling isolated? The Wellbeing Support Group would be delighted to welcome you to this weekly online-based support group where you will have the opportunity to speak to others, express how you are feeling and receive support and connectedness from the group.


Mindfulness Meditation

In this class, you will learn relaxation exercises and stress-busting techniques. You will incorporate mindfulness, movement, laughter, deep relaxation, breathing techniques and lots more.

You will need to find a quiet, comfy space in your home, a yoga mat or blanket if possible, and there will be an opportunity at the end of the class for people to connect through conversation.


Creative Writing

Join this online group to get inspiration and share your writings with a small supportive group. All levels and abilities are welcome. Each week has a different theme, last week the theme was 'describe yourself as a holiday'! Come and join us - what have you got to lose?!


Gardening and Food Growing

Now is the perfect time to get out in the garden or on your allotment and start growing. Our gardening guru will be sharing her expertise and giving you tips and advice on gardening and food growing via an online video linked group. Starter kits with some veggie seeds may also be available.


Games Group

We will be playing simple word games like Boggle, doing crosswords together or having a go at some quiz games via an online video link.


Nature Connection

Connect with yourself, others, and the landscape around you through virtual walking, talking and guided meditation. Deepen your awareness of the living world and experience the power of connecting to nearby nature. You are invited to sit in a location where you can see an aspect of the living world; a tree, birds on a feeder, a potted plant or the wild sky through the window. Even an object made from a natural material can be used.


Get Twitching!

The RSPB have a great online resource of birds found in the UK, so why not make the most of this time at home and log the birds you see? You never know, you may see something rare or unusual in your own back garden!

Use this link for birds: https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/

And this one for all wildlife: https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/wildlife-guides/

Breathe & Begin with Jacky Wise

Zoom Tech Support

Shania Jones from Connecting Generations is pleased to announce that this Friday's call is featuring Surrinder Bains from Playlists For Life (https://www.playlistforlife.org.uk/).

Surrinder is going to be discussing and presenting how to create your own playlist and to reconnect with music. This is a brilliant way for people to get involved and have fun. The charity is all about helping individuals (especially with dementia) reconnect with family and friends.

To join this interactive session please follow the link to a scheduled Zoom meeting on Friday at 10am. Please also send the link to anyone you know who may find the session helpful.


Meeting ID: 181 481 673

NHS Health at Home

The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak means you should only leave your home if it's essential, but it's still easy to get NHS help using your smartphone, tablet or computer.

This page contains information to help you:

  1. contact your GP
  2. order repeat prescriptions
  3. manage long-term conditions
  4. maintain your mental and physical wellbeing

If you need an NHS service, try to do it online first. If you cannot access what you need this way or do not have internet access, try asking a friend or family member to help you, or speak to your GP surgery on the phone.

Visit the Health at Home website by using this link: https://www.nhs.uk/health-at-home/

Meals at Home

If you're struggling to get meals, both AgeUK and Bath City Farm are offering home deliveries for those in need.

BaNES Council is offering a meals-on-wheels service, information can be found here: https://www.bathnes.gov.uk/services/care-and-support-and-you/staying-your-own-home/help-meals

View AgeUK's menus here: https://www.ageuk.org.uk/bp-assets/globalassets/wiltshire/aukw-community-meals-menus-2020.pdf

To place an order with AgeUK please contact: communitymeals@ageukwiltshire.org.uk or phone 01793 687017 (Age UK Wiltshire)

To contact Bath City Farm - please email them at mealsonwheels@bathcityfarm.org.uk 

Video Conferencing

Below, we have included a number of live videos that you can watch and engage with from home. You’ll see that they are all linked by the free video chat application 'Zoom', which can be downloaded here. You can also use Zoom to stay in contact with family and friends, with video chats online for free!

Exercise Classes with Liz Coleman

Join Liz every Monday from 12-1pm live on Zoom for her weekly session. Click here to take part in a fun, friendly exercise class that you can do straight from your own home.

Staying in touch

For more information on using social media and other forms of staying in touch with friends and family, visit this BBC article.

St Mungo's Wellbeing Guide

Online resources and ideas to support positive mental health and wellbeing during the Covid-19 outbreak.

In the Wellbeing Guide, you will find useful online resources and ideas to support positive mental health and wellbeing whilst at home during Covid-19. Each resource is based around one of the 5 ways to wellbeing, which may help to maintain your positivity, gain a fresh perspective and give you a different focus during this difficult time.

Find all of the links here.

Free access to exercise at home

In addition to the many online exercise videos on the internet right now (see below), we are also able to offer tailored exercises from 2 of our fantastic tutors:

Here is the brilliant Jules with some short mindfulness and yoga videos:

Visit Jules Yoga Wellbeing page on Facebook for online yoga tutorials.

Liz Lees Yoga programme is available upon request - please email community.outreach@stjohnsbath.org.uk.

By using YouTube (see Entertainment section below), you can stay healthy by following a number of online videos. We’ve got the following suggestions (just remember, they’re not for everyone, and only do what you can!):

BBC Exercising at Home – the BBC are offering tips on exercising at home, and The Green Goddess – “the original keep-fit queen of the 80s - is making a comeback on BBC Breakfast. Eighty-year-old Diana Moran will be doing exercises three times a week from self-isolation so viewers can follow along at home”.

Chair Yoga – for beginners and anyone wanting seated chair yoga.

General Work Out – aimed at older persons, can be done seated or 

We hope you will find this useful while our activities are temporarily suspended. Please forward this information pack on to anyone who you feel would benefit.

We would also love to hear from you – how are you managing? Do you have useful tips to share? Get in touch at community.outreach@stjohnsbath.org.uk and we could feature you and your advice in the next newsletter!

Created By
Sam Norris