We’re thrilled to share that we hosted our very first People’s Shed workshop in Gloucester on Friday 6 October.

The session was a Frenchic upcycling workshop attended by six companions who are being supported by Emmaus Gloucestershire. Local upcycling expert Lynn led the four-hour session, during which our companions breathed new life into donated items using Frenchic paint, known for its versatility in upcycling projects.

Each companion selected a piece of furniture that had been donated to our homelessness charity. The process involved cleaning, sanding, and applying multiple coats of Frenchic paint.

Everyone had a great time at the workshop, and we received some very positive feedback. Sara, who typically works in our eBay office on a computer, said “It was a really nice change from what I usually do at Emmaus.” Filipe was excited about the experience, saying, “It’s a new and amazing experience. I hope there are more days like this.” Leo found the workshop fun and relaxing, stating, “It was enjoyable and allowed me to express myself.” Rebecca said she would definitely do it again, and Martin liked having the opportunity to give an item a new lease of life. Andrei also gave the event a big thumbs up!

We initially announced our People’s Shed project in May 2021, but faced delays due to the pandemic and lockdowns. The inspiration behind this project comes from the Men’s Shed Association, which has successfully created community spaces for men to combat loneliness and isolation through collaborative projects.

We plan to host more workshops for our companions and eventually extend them to the public. We’re actively seeking collaborations with local creatives interested in leading workshops, covering a wide range of interests from woodworking, upholstery and upcycling to arts, crafts, literature, pottery, and music. If you are interested in leading a workshop, please get in touch by emailing [email protected]