The Dragon Café is a Mental Fight Club creative project: a relaxing café and imaginative space, open to all, located in the Crypt of St George the Martyr Church, Borough High St, SE1 1JA, opposite Borough tube station. (Map). Open every Monday (but only on a Monday) from 12 midday to 8.30 pm.
The Dragon Café provides a simple, affordable, healthy menu each week, and a wide range of creative and well-being activities, all of which are free and open to all. No enrolment is required for groups, just turn up and take part, as much or as little as you like. Click here for next Monday’s programme (latest version put up each Thursday).
This Month at The Dragon Café – A Festival of Freud
A month of events in collaboration with the Freud Museum to explore psychoanalytic ideas. Freud’s theories are often seen as outmoded and irrelevant these days, yet also quite intriguing. In these imaginative workshops, talks and screenings you will get a chance to learn what they really mean and how they connect to creativity and everyday life.
Dragon Café closure over Christmas and New Year
This year, for the first time since we opened, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day fall on a Monday.
It would be extremely difficult for staff, volunteers and activity leaders to make it in on these days due to transport issues and personal commitments and so The Dragon Café will be closed. This means that Monday 18th December will be the last Café of the year and then we shall return on Monday 8th January 2018.
The Wellbeing Café at Morley College
join us on Friday 24th November at Morley College Refectory for the last of this year’s Wellbeing Cafés. The theme for this month’s Café is Winter Warmth!
You can enjoy:
14.00 – 17.00: Wooly Winter Workshop – simple weaving and pom pom making
14.00 – 17.00: Treat yourself with a relaxing Reiki session
14.00 – 17.00: Plant flower bulbs to take home with our friends from HOurBank
14.00 – 15.30: Create a seasonal greeting card using calligraphy
15.00 – 16.00: Seated Zumba – a fun chair-based movement and dance workshop
15.30 – 17.00: Community singing – all are welcome to join – no experience needed!
Plus games, mandala colouring, treats and crosswords throughout the Café!
Tell us which workshops you are interested in on arrival and we’ll make sure you get a space
All Wellbeing Café activities are free, fun, and open to everybody (no experience necessary)
For more information click here
Please note there will be no Wellbeing Café in December – but we will meet again to celebrate the New Year with a Wellbeing Café on Friday 26th January 2018 from 14:00 – 17:00.
The Refectory, Morley College, 61 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7HT
(click here for a map)
The Wellbeing Café is a collaboration between The Dragon Café and Morley College. A big thank you to The WaCoCo (Waterloo Community Coalition) who have supported us to continue the Wellbeing Cafés this term and into January 2018.
An inspiration to us all, Sarah Wheeler
It is with deep sadness that we share the news that our friend and colleague Sarah Wheeler passed away in the early hours of Tuesday 19th April 2016. As you may know Sarah was diagnosed with cancer in 2013 and it was only in her last few weeks that she moved into a hospice. Throughout her illness she remained engaged in many activities and continued to speak up for those with lived experience of mental illness.
Sarah has been an inspirational figure to many of us personally and also across the mental health sector and wider community. Sarah was that rarest of human beings, a visionary. Sarah’s friendship, her vision and her ability to create and communicate will always be remembered, and she will be greatly missed. Mental Fight Club (MFC) and the pioneering Dragon Café are her legacy to us all, and we will be continuing to develop and expand the important work that MFC does.
We hope that in Sarah’s spirit you come along to The Dragon Café soon and celebrate her life through the many creative interactions available.
We are very excited to have trialed a pop-up Dragon Café @ Morley College as part of the Connect and Discover programme. We were at Morley College Refectory on 10 Fridays between September 2015 and March 2016 from 2 – 5 pm offering a range of creative activities for your mental wellbeing, all free and open to everyone. It was a great success and we shall keep you posted on any future plans for a return.
On Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th February 2016 we had a fantastic weekend curating the Mind Space in partnership with the Southbank Centre, as part of Changing Minds – a weekend festival about mental health and the arts featuring music, talks, performance and workshops. The atmosphere was welcoming and vibrant and we hope that this festival will return!
We are delighted to let you know that we recently welcomed our 7000th Patron to the Cafe! An amazing number for a one day a week creative project that has been open a little over four years. Well done all!
We are also thrilled to be able to announce that The Dragon Café won the Celebrating Diversity Award at the Southwark Arts Forum Awards (the SAFTAs), held on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at the lovely Unicorn Theatre. The award was sponsored by RE/MAX and we would like to thank them as well as Southwark Arts Forum, and offer our congratulations to all the other nominees and winners. Creativity is clearly thriving in the borough of Southwark!
(Declan and Seth received the Celebrating Diversity Award on behalf of The Dragon Cafe team.)
On 9th February 2015 The Dragon Cafe reached a major milestone – our 100th Monday. To keep going we need your help to raise £100,000. Join the DRAGONCAFE100 campaign and donate here to keep the cafe running. Your support is greatly appreciated.
In the countdown to the 100th Dragon Cafe we had some exciting and perceptive coverage in the media – national and global! Guardian columnist, Christina Patterson wrote about her experience of visiting The Dragon Cafe and reflected on in its importance in relation to wider society and her late sister’s experience of mental breakdown. Click here to read.
Meanwhile, Kate Vandy from the World Service’s Weekend news programme explored the space in sound and talked to Sarah, Seth, Kate in the kitchen and two patrons. Click here to listen (the piece appears at 35 minutes). BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Live also paid a visit to the Dragon Café and you listen to it here (about 32 minutes in) and The Dragon Café paid a visit to Resonance Radio 104.4 FM, and was featured on the hour long Clear Spot slot, available here.
Go Well & See You Soon!
Click here for this week’s full programme.