For transparency, I’ve decided to include both the original ‘About Us’ and the update. In short, The Storybook Cafe used to be both in real life and online, but as a result of my own health issues, I’ve had to move it online only. Practice what you preach and all that jazz! Read on if you want to know more.
Hi everyone. As I said, there are going to be changes to the cafe, which I have thought a lot about over the last month. I have decided the best thing to do is to stop doing the cafe in person for the foreseeable future. This has been a difficult decision to make, as I have enjoyed the past 2 years and am very proud of what we have achieved together. However, I need to put my own mental health first, and I’ve realised the cafe is not sustainable as it is with only me running it. A project like this needs a team of people and an infrastructure to ensure the practitioners are able to stay mentally healthy and don’t burn out, which is just not possible at this time.
However, that doesn’t it mean is all going to disappear! We have a new website, with a blog which will be updated weekly with self-care activity ideas, self-help book reviews, a book of the week, and information about mental health. I am also working on a podcast that will cover different people’s experiences of mental health issues and what they have found helps them. I am excited about this, and I feel it is more sustainable and if the best use of my skills. I hope you can also appreciate the need for this change, and continue to practice self-care and kindness towards yourself and others.
Look after yourselves,
The Storybook Cafe gifts you can find in our shop were created after the original, literal Storybook Cafe was set up in Sheffield. It’s a mental health cafe, a safe space where people can come and do things to improve their mental health, like reading, origami, writing letters, colouring, or just having a chat over a cup of tea. We promote self-care – doing small things to look after yourself which together start to make a big difference. I love to read in particular, because it provides me with a way to escape, as well as providing comfort in the characters who feel something similar to me. I find that the connection we find in stories about our common human experiences – love, loss, loneliness, kindness, frustration, hope – mean we can learn so much about different people’s lives through their stories. The cafe is a place where this comes to life, where we tell our own stories and create a community based on understanding and kindness.
Storybook Cafe Gifts are delivering self-care into your home, so when you need to take some time to look after yourself, you will be reminded to do so by one of our gifts. They are also an important reminder to someone else who may need a little show of love. All the profit from the gifts goes back into the cafe so that the activities remain free and we can keep giving people our most valuable gift – time and care.
But we also wanted to make sure people could access some free resources and information about self care and support options online, so that’s what the blog is for. You will find our weekly updates, videos, and activity ideas on here alongside links to other support services.
Spreading kindness, love and big squishy hugs,
The Storybook Cafe Team