About the Living Tree
We meet weekly on a Friday afternoon over a cup of tea in comfortable surroundings at the Friends Meeting House, South Street, Bridport between 2.00-4.00pm. As a rule, we have a speaker or demonstration first and finish the afternoon chatting, sharing experiences and exchanging thoughts. People are welcome to drop in for part of the afternoon – not everyone can spare the full two hours. Also, everyone is free to “pick and mix”, there is no obligation or even expectation to attend each and every Friday. In fact, the Living Tree supports members who never attend meetings at all.
We have a programme of speakers and therapists on a wide variety of relevant topics such as complementary therapies, exercise, relaxation, diet and nutrition, creative arts for those with cancer, NHS support. We’ve had talks and demonstrations on Dorset Cancer Care, acupuncture, reflexology, soul midwives, diet and nutrition, homeopathy and tried out Qigong, as well as paper crafts, mindfulness, singing and playing the ukulele! We have regular gentle stretch & relaxation times.
We began meeting in November 2020 and have gradually been turning two pieces of grass and mud into two allotment plots. Meeting outdoors and growing healthy vegetables and fruits is the icing on the cake. However, the very special thing about it is that a group of people meet each week and have fun and banter and chat and support each other when they need it. Some weeks we’ve had music, other weeks we’ve had talks, but generally we potter, doing as little or as much as everyone wants or feels able to do.
We will definitely repeat our harvest supper evening when we all gathered and cooked our produce outside together and one of our musically talented members wrote and played music. It was such a lovely evening with such a lovely atmosphere.
The Living Tree is a registered charity which offers friendship, creative activities & holistic therapies, relevant diet & lifestyle information for anyone with any cancer. We offer mutual support, helping people cope with the fear, anxiety, isolation or stress that cancer can bring by offering a chance to unwind and share laughter (we do a lot of this!) and coping strategies. We also share our knowledge and information about services and resources in the locality.
There is currently no cancer care centre in Dorset to help people living with cancer take back control of their health and lifestyle. Our nearest centres are The Force in Exeter and the Penny Brohn Centre in Bristol. There are excellent disease specific support groups, usually supported by Clinical Nurse Specialists, but few are very local and some are quite a distance away in Poole.
The Living Tree was set up in October 2012. We became a small “community group” in July 2016. We were given a start-up grant for 2013 by Macmillan Cancer Support. The Living Tree became a charity in March 2020, our registered charity number is: 1188213.
MacMillan made a video of the Living Tree, its members, its activities and the way it works in the summer of 2019, which you can view below.