Faith and wellbeing discussed at Oldham women's inter-faith group

Date published: 24 October 2021

Members of 'Women Growing Together' the Oldham women's inter-faith group have met in person for the first time since Covid restrictions were put in place last year.

The event, held at Oldham Civic Centre and attended by 40 women, included keynote speakers Julia Hose, consultant psychologist, and Elaine Pitt, a psychiatric social worker.

The event took place on Mental Health Awareness week, an annual event when there is an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health.

Appropriately, the topic was faith and wellbeing.

Both speakers outlined the many factors that can impact on women's lives, leading to fatigue, stress and, sometimes mental illness. In all communities women have traditionally been seen as the main caregivers, but the guests spoke of  the need for women to learn how to look after themselves.

Following questions and discussion, women representing each of four faith groups, Muslim, Hindu, Jewish and Christian spoke briefly about how their communities offer support to women and contribute to their wellbeing.

Tia Henderson, Oldham Youth Mayor, also took part in the event. She read a moving self-penned poem about mental illness.

Three Hindu friends then demonstrated a sacred dance which is performed during worship in the temple, and the evening concluded with delicious Asian snacks and a chance to circulate and enjoy conversation.

Women Growing Together (WGT) brings together women of different ethnic and religious backgrounds, from across Oldham. The group supports women to come together and take part in activities and social events, creating opportunities to learn about each other’s faith and culture. WGT helps to challenge stereotypes and prejudice through friendship, knowledge and fun.

WGT meets on the first Tuesday of every month to plan and organise events and welcomes women of all faiths and backgrounds.  To find out more, click here.

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