A grandmother who suffered mental health problems as a child and had a nervous breakdown has turned her life around after attending special meditation classes.
Sheila Campbell, 60, joined the sessions organised by housing association Cartrefi Conwy in February and says they have made a huge difference to her and are aiding her recovery.
Sheila, who is married and has three children and three grandchildren, lives in Trinity Avenue, Llandudno, but spent the first 40 years of her life in Liverpool.
She said: “The quality of life is much better here and my husband has been going out with the walking group and I’ve become involved with gardening here.
“As a child I was dyslexic and when I was in school there were 53 in the class and they had this system of teaching based on phonetics which meant I couldn’t read or write properly.
“These classes have also been wonderful for me and helped me do more for myself because I was under a lot of stress because I was always trying to do everything 110 per cent.
“They have helped me slow my breathing and reduce my blood pressure and I’ve got involved with gardening and I help the older people who are too old to look after their gardens now and I love it.
“The classes teach me to be kinder to myself and the more I do the better I get so now I’m confident I’m going to have a very healthy life in the future.”
She added: “Cartrefi Conwy don’t just provide you with a home, they look after your physical and mental health as well. I’m really amazed at how much they put into the welfare of their tenants.
“They are really ahead of the game in the care they provide and the group activities they organise.”
Lydia Watson, Cartrefi Conwy’s Community Involvement Co-ordinator, has taken the Mindful Movement and Meditation classes at Llandudno’s Trinity Community Centre since September.
She said: “The idea is that it helps you heal yourself. It rebalances you if you’re out of sync.
“Very often aches and pains are the symptom of a mental health issue so the classes are about providing them with a way to deal with their own mental health issues.
“This is about helping people find a way of dealing with stress. I’ve been doing Tai Chi and meditation for 20 years and we are finding that mental health problems and stress are two of the most common issues in our communities.”
Dewi Jones, from Betws yn Rhos, near Abergele, has been a regular since the classes started and he said: “I’ve found them very helpful and very calming because I’ve been suffering from depression for a number of years.
“It has helped me come out of myself and I’m sleeping better while the meditation has helped me deal with my stress issues. I now wake up and want to get out of bed and have a smile on my face.”
For more on Cartrefi Conwy go to https://cartreficonwy.org/