100th Dragon Café
Today we're enjoying ourselves at the fantastic Dragon Café, – the UK's first 'mental health café' and creative space, devised and delivered by Mental Fight Club, a London-based, service-user led, creative force for change.
We’re here for a very special 100th Dragon Café, with lots to do and lots to enjoy, marking a real milestone for the charity, which launched in October 2012. Today's all about celebrating how far the Café's come, sharing the extraordinary and inspirational story behind it, and exploring its unusual history, its creative presents and its exciting future vision.
The day kicked off with a special breakfast, hosted by creative learning entrepreneur and former Board member of the South London & Maudsely NHS Foundation Kumar Jacob, along with Mental Fight Club Founder and Creative Director, Sarah Wheeler.
From midday the doors have been open to the community with a creative cabaret that's set to continue until 8.30pm. Volunteers and patrons have been sharing their stories in words, music and art. But everyone's had the chance to get involved with collaborative drawing projects, a happiness game, and even a special cabaret photo booth!
We'll be joined by special guests Turning Point Chief Executive Lord Victor, performance artist Bobby Baker and Afro-Jazz singer Maiuko between 3-4pm for the highlight of the day. Together they’ll launch DRAGONCAFE100, a new fund-raising and awareness campaign to help secure the café's future.
Then at 6pm, we'll we tucking into a special menu and fundraising buffet; and – after that – dancing to the beats of Bloco Maloco’s samba drums. All this excitement will (naturally) finish with fireworks!
If you'd like to read more about the Dragon Café, take a look at Christina Patterson's fantastic article for the Guardian, in which she writes about her experience of visiting the café, and reflects on its importance in relation to wider society.
If you'd like to make a donation, click here.