The First Steps Lounge seeks to provide a safe, warm and welcoming space for those isolated by and living with mental ill-health. It’s a safe place to connect with others and enjoy coffee, crafts, companionship and various activities. It is hoped that The Lounge will provide inspiration and opportunity for women living with mental ill-health to grow in self-confidence while taking those courageous first steps to reconnect with others and their community.
Coordinator First Steps Lounge
Prior to stepping into the role of coordinator at First Steps Lounge, Annie was a chaplain for seven years at a local Kinder-Year 12 school, working with and supporting students, parents and staff. Annie has a background in mentoring and pastoral care. Annie has a passion for supporting and encouraging people and for long conversations over good coffee. Over the years Annie has undertaken training in the area of mental health through YMIS QLD as well as MH First Aid, Grief & Loss, Mentoring, Youth MH First Aid, Suicide Awareness & Prevention and Pastoral Care. She is a mother of eight and grandmother of eight, which keeps her pleasantly busy when not working at the First Steps Lounge.
First Steps Lounge have been privileged to have local artist, Kathleen Bentley, come onboard and offer a 5-week art class to Lounge participants. Kathleen is primarily a pastel artist and has been teaching the ladies how to draw and create a pastel art work. Fair to say, she has been met with two contrasts – great enthusiasm and deep scepticism! The lament, “I can’t draw,” has been uttered more than once. Surprisingly, the sceptics have had to admit they can draw – thanks to Kathleen’s tutorials and encouragement.