I was not sure what to expect when I first came to look around.

My GP referred me and I really needed something to work. Being creative has always interested me, but I hadn’t done much since school, I had no incentive.

8 months ago I couldn’t leave the house. The only thing I would try was the shopping in Sainsbury’s, but I couldn’t go without my son and if it was too busy I would turn on my heels and run. Every day I would wake up and feel sad I was alive.

My anxiety was high on my first day, I was apprehensive but within 10 minutes I had calmed down, I was settling in straight away, I felt at home, like I had found a new family- this was unusual, it was a strange mix of emotions.

I was expecting the worst and surprised by everything.

Now I am part of the production days I come twice a week, it is essential, I’d be lost without coming here and I would slip back. I have to take each day as it comes but I have not missed a day coming here. The night before I come, I smile, I am happy about the thought of tomorrow.

I have been part of the team screen printing the panels for Gobowen Library. I have so many more skills now. There are 32 panels, with many different elements and with each one I learn new techniques and tricks. I can’t wait to see them in the library.

I am braver now, I do feel different but life is still hard, it will take time. My partner does notice the difference and I do think about the future and work now, which I couldn’t before.

The good thing about here is that it’s not just work for the wall. I am involved in producing work that lot’s of people will see, I want people to see it, and I feel so proud that I am putting something back in to the community.

I am soaking it in, coming out of myself, making friends and not hiding away.

Bill has been part of the team designing and making 32 printed panels for Gobowen Central, a community space wanting a new identity so that conversations can start about what is possible in the future. This project has been funded by The Big Lottery Fund, Awards For All.

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