Gobbling Up Worries with New “Worrry Creature Workshop”

Media Release – April 7, 2021

Innisfil, ON – Coping with the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for us all. Fear, uncertainty and isolation has made it even harder for children to feel safe and calm. But what if there was a worry creature to gobble up their worries?

This idea is behind Gilda’s Club Simcoe Muskoka’s “Worry Creature Workshop.” Hosted by Certified Child Life Specialist, Jocelyn Leworthy, the workshop helps validate children’s worries and teaches them coping strategies – like worry creatures – which help children express and manage heavy feelings.

On Saturday, April 17 at 2:00 p.m., Innisfil families are welcome to join the free, virtual “Worry Creates in the Community” workshop – complete with an interactive worry creature kit. Families can register for the workshop at https://innisfil.bibliocommons.com/events/, and Library staff will follow up to arrange worry creature kit pick-up via curbside service.

“When children write/draw worries and feed them to their worry creature they no longer have to feel this weight on their own, they can get back to being kids and doing the things they enjoy,” explains Leworthy. “Feeding the worry creature can also encourage family communication, allowing adults the opportunity to facilitate conversation, provide validation, and help children cope and manage their concerns.”

This project is a true example of how a community can come together during a challenging time. The project was funded by the Innisfil Community Foundation through the Government of Canada’s Emergency Community Support Fund, and the worry creature kits were created by local manufacturer, Moore Packaging. The workshop has been running successfully within Innisfil schools, but knowing just how much children are struggling right now, the ideaLAB & Library jumped at the chance to help share the workshop with an even bigger audience. The Library quickly added the workshop to their virtual “Spring Break” programming and offered to help get the worry creature kits into the community.

“Our community is an incredible place with so many people pitching in to help wherever they can,” says Anne Smith, ideaLAB & Library Board Chair and Innisfil Community Foundation Treasurer. “Both the ideaLAB & Library and the Innisfil Community Foundation are proud to be able to help facilitate this program. We hope that participants leave the workshop feeling a little lighter than when they arrive.”

About Gilda’s Club:

Gilda’s Club Simcoe Muskoka, an affiliate of the Cancer Support Community, is dedicated to providing support, education and hope to all people impacted by cancer, family members and friends of those diagnosed, children, and people who have lost someone to cancer. Our evidence-based programming includes support groups, healthy lifestyle workshops, mind-body classes, social activities, educational lectures and community resource information.

https://gildasclubsimcoemuskoka.org/

About Innisfil ideaLAB& Library:

With an array of incredible programs, events, resources and stories, the Innisfil ideaLAB & Library wants YOU to get involved today! Books, DVDs, e-resources, free wi-fi, music recording, vinyl signs, graphic design, community gathering space, 3D printing, soldering, business resources, community events, jewelry making, robotics, and we have a laser!

https://www.innisfilidealab.ca/

About Innisfil Community Foundation:

Innisfil Community Foundation is here to strengthen the common good. We’re making trust-based community grants to empower the organizations that work tirelessly in our community, and we’re connecting our donors to the causes they care about in a real and tangible way. We are passionate about connecting our community because we know that, together, we will create positive change beyond our wildest dreams.

www.innisfilcommunityfoundation.ca