By SHARMILA JAY
The Women’s Shed Hills Shire is offering a range of women’s programs specially created to promote awareness on mental health and mental wellbeing.
The organisation’s President, qualified psychiatrist and psycho geriatrician Padmini Howpage said: “Throughout life, the sense of belonging and having support leads to satisfaction, optimism, higher self-esteem and having a purpose. Being part of community organisations reduces loneliness, increases self-worth and stimulates the reward systems in the brain.
“Our focus has always been promoting that positive feeling and the mental health awareness month October gives us greater opportunities to do that.”
Kishani Ariyasinghe, the Membership Manager of the, ACNC registered independent charity, said: “Our regular programs are designed to promote overall wellbeing; mind, body and soul.”
The Women’s Wellness Hub, organised under the Shed banner, is a thriving community of supportive women who meet Tuesdays between 1pm and 3pm at the Castle Towers Community Hub.
Co-ordinator Anita Fisher said: “On Tuesdays, women from a diverse range of backgrounds and life experiences gather over a cuppa to network, learn from and support each other.
“A generous grant from Baulkham Hills Sports Club enables us to offer free wellbeing focused activities. We invite guest speakers who organise sessions for meditation, essential oils, and fun, therapeutic crafts.”
The Wellness Walk is held every month and is open to families. Chitra Iyar, the Secretary of the organisation and the leader of the walks said the walks are a great social activity.
The bimonthly Cookery Workshops take participants on a culinary journey and enable like-minded women to share a meal and their experiences together. The 10 workshops will culminate in the publication of a cookery book featuring the recipes and migrant stories in partnership with the Taste of Diversity program of the Community Migrant Resource Centre.
The Books and Beyond bimonthly book club is hosted at the Coco Cubano restaurant in Rouse Hill. Sharmila Niriella, Vice President of the Shed and the architect of the book club, said: “Most who attend the book club are working women. Some have a developed passion for reading, some want to develop that passion, but we all get together to have a conversation and our recommended reads allow us to go beyond the book and the author.”
The youth wing of the Shed, the Coco Youth Group is thriving under the leadership of its president ,Tian Yi Wong See a Year 11 student of Rouse Hill High School.
For further details about the work of the Shed visit the website www.thewomensshedhillsshire.com.au or the group’s Facebook and Instagram pages.