Jo visits IPSUM

When the UK went into lockdown in 2020, our lead sponsor Nationwide partnered with the Wiltshire Community Foundation to create the Oakfield Community Response fund. Local charities, not-for-profits and community groups could apply for grants of up to £10,000. IPSUM received a grant of £5000 from the fund.

Founded in 1974, IPSUM was created to support local people struggling with their mental health through talking and creative therapies. More recently, IPSUM has built on that foundation to develop a range of artistic therapies including therapeutic art and music, creative writing, meditation and mindfulness, as well as professional training.

Jo met with Julie Mattinson, Ipsum Director, to find out how the £5000 grant has helped the charity during the difficult period. Julie told Jo that the money enabled IPSUM to continue supporting their clients during the pandemic, creating online sessions for art workshops, music and choir. These sessions helped keep clients connected with IPSUM and the great work they do whilst the lockdown restrictions were in place, helping them stay on top of their mental health during what was a really difficult period for everyone.

Jo wanted to explore other ways in which Nationwide could continue to support IPSUM through fundraising and volunteering. Whilst showing Jo some of the artwork created by clients in the arts and crafts workshops that IPSUM provides, Julie mentioned the charity had previously made Christmas cards and sold them to help raise funds. The pair recognised the opportunity for those cards to be sold via local Nationwide branches, so have agreed to arrange this later in the year.

Nationwide’s Property Services team have also organised to do some decorating in the IPSUM office and provide them with some much-needed furniture and storage units.

If you’d like to find out more about IPSUM and the services they offer, or if you’d like to find out how you can get involved, visit