A WOKINGHAM charity has hit upon a clever way to support children deal with the pandemic: they’re sending in the circus.
And it’s not just a case of spreading some cheer, after all, teach a man to juggle …
Wokingham In Need (WIN) has teamed up with Circus Scene to provide circus skills workshops for primary school aged children.
The sessions aim to help children cope with stress, particularly if they have been isolated or are vulnerable.
Circus Scene are no strangers to the borough, regularly popping up at events, entertaining crowds with magic, juggling and clowning around. They also teach and have developed a fun workshop for schools, which has been tailored to youngsters’ needs.
Susan Jackson, founder of WIN, said: “Participating in fun Circus Skills Workshops has many positive impacts for children. It is the perfect antidote to the stresses of life, especially in particularly difficult times.
“We know there are many benefits to mindfulness and that it is good for body and soul.
“However, it can be difficult for younger children to grasp. Circus skills on the other hand, are active and involve focusing the mind on a task, which children often find more achievable.”
She adds that juggling is a neuromuscular skill that has an impact of brain functions and can improve health and mental wellbeing: “In short, circus skills help improve health and mental wellbeing, as well as Improving self-confidence and self-esteem, reducing anxiety, encouraging physical exercise, improving resilience and most of all circus skills are fun and should encourage a healthy giggle function. Laughter, as we all recognise, makes
you feel better and is critical to wellbeing.”
There’s other benefits too: it boosts concentration levels and confidence, it improves hand-to-eye co-ordination, leads to greater self-esteem, helps children work together and exercises the brain.
So it’s a win-WIN situation.
But the charity is appealing for some help so it can send in the Circus Scene team.
Susan says: “Wokingham in Need is proud to be working in the local community to drive awareness of Mental Health Wellbeing and assisting in anxiety and mental health issues.
“So can you help us to continue our work in supporting children in this way – if you can donate to this worthy cause that would be amazing.”
Cheques can be left at the Broad Street branch of Prospect Estate Agency in Wokingham town centre. Just a few doors down, Nationwide Building Society is taking credit card payments. Or you can contact WIN via its website or Facebook page to discuss alternative ways to help.
For more details, log on to https://www.facebook.com/WokinghamInNeed