Community life in Camphill Community Mourne Grange is built on relationships. We strive to develop meaningful, equal relationships, regardless of a person’s level of ability. Everyone benefits from the reciprocal relationships in communities, and great value is placed on connections and friendships.
Social life takes place in the households and in our shared spaces where we live and work together and participate in our various cultural activities both within the community and in the wider local community.
Camphill Community Mourne Grange has a rich and varied cultural life. We get together to make music, perform plays and celebrate a range of festivals including Michaelmas, Advent, Easter, Christmas, Whitsun and St John’s. Celebrating festivals helps us to mark the passing of the year, and creates a rhythm and stability in our lives.
We support people to express themselves creatively through crafts, music and drama. These activities are fun, but also help people to develop new skills and confidence.
In addition to social and cultural opportunities it is also important to provide support through therapy. Within Camphill Community Mourne Grange there is a purpose built health and therapy centre, Helios.
There are fully equipped rooms for massage, therapeutic bath treatments and two large studios for art therapy, and eurythmy.
Other members of the multi-disciplinary team also visit, for example podiatry, GPs, community nurses, speech and language and occupational therapy.
This provides a holistic approach to Community life within Camphill Community Mourne Grange.
Home is where the heart is. In Camphill Community Mourne Grange we know about the sense of security and belonging that is generated through a nurturing family life. Our community is composed of households that offer people a set of close, dependable relationships. This gives them the confidence they need to explore the wider environment, tap into their creativity and make a contribution to the wider community.
The house-communities in Camphill Community Mourne Grange vary in size and make-up, ranging in number from three to six residents, who live together with co-workers and their families in a life-sharing environment. The emphasis is on creating a warm , cosy atmosphere and providing a safe and secure home for everyone.
Everybody makes a contribution to caring for their home by helping with cooking and cleaning, and sharing in all aspects of daily life. Fresh produce from the farm and garden provide the main ingredients for healthy and nutritious meals.
It’s important that each person is enabled to express their own individuality, especially in their own room.
Celebration is a large part of community-life, and this is also so in the house-communities. Occasions like birthdays, farewells, and seasonal festivals are enjoyed together at home by preparing special meals and decorating the house together.
Camphill Community Mourne Grange offers people the opportunity to find purpose in a variety of work and creative activities. Meaningful work is very important to everyone, and for us work is not restricted to paid employment. Knowing that what you do matters and is valued by the Community contributes greatly to your sense of belonging, but also your own self-worth.
If you are ever in the Mournes, which is an area of outstanding natural beauty, come and visit the Camphill Community Mourne Grange craft and coffee shop.
The coffee-shop provides a peaceful and relaxed surrounding to enjoy a coffee, or a choice of teas and juices, and some home-bake scones, biscuits and cakes from the Camphill Community Mourne Grange bakery. There is also a small selections of treats for special diets.
The craft-shop sells handcrafted goods produced in the Camphill Community Mourne Grange craft work-shops. There is also a selection of books and other beautifully crafted produce available. The shop now sells a good choice of organic foods and produce. It is ideal place to buy something special for your home or a gift for a special occasion.
During the year, the Camphill Community Mourne Grange shop arranges a variety of seasonal artistic and musical activities for its customers on Friday afternoons. These are advertised in the shop, and on the web-site, and include a monthly visit to some of our work-shops.
The bakery provides the opportunity to learn about making bread, biscuits and cakes. The busy bakery team produces all the bread for the community, pizza dough, biscuits for tea break and cakes for birthdays and celebrations. They also supply all the biscuits, cakes and scones for our Camphill Community Mourne Grange coffee shop.
The farm is registered to Demeter standards and covers a large area of the Camphill Community Mourne Grange estate. There are cattle, sheep and chickens, all of which provide meat, wool and eggs for the community. Members of the farm team have the opportunity to learn about looking after the land and animals and provide a meaningful contribution to the Community.
In the garden we grow biodynamic vegetables, fruit and flowers for our community. The team enjoys being able to share the produce with the houses every week. There is an increased sense of well-being from being outside in the ‘great outdoors’, being in touch with nature and being part of a growing process producing food for their Community.
In the Weavery there is the opportunity to learn about weaving and felting. Each person is able to work on a loom and produce many beautiful woven items, for example wall hangings, rugs, oven gloves, bags and table runners. These are sold in our Camphill Community Mourne Grange craft shop and also at local craft fairs.
The well equipped wood workshop is able to produce many useful products for our community. There are opportunities to make pieces which are both functional and artistic for sale in our Camphill Community Mourne Grange craft shop or at local and community craft fairs. There is the opportunity to learn a range of skills, for example carving, sanding and wood turning.
Candle making is a peaceful and therapeutic craft. Our villagers can learn a range of skills and are involved in every step of the process They have the satisfaction of seeing the beautiful results of their work and are always delighted when they can deliver beautiful candles to the houses or pack them carefully for sale, for markets and our online shop.
The Upcycling Workshop is a small endeavor in Camphill Community Mourne Grange to bring new life to old, used, worn and tired items such as furniture, lamps, trays, picture frames and other things. All of us learning as we go along but enjoying the journey. Learning to master new tools is confidence and self – esteem boosting. There is much satisfaction to be had from seeing someone’s old chair transformed and beautiful again, or a table gleaming and shining after its loving makeover.