Woodworking has been an instrumental part of recovery for many of the men who have been attending The Right Key for years. It was one of the first projects that emerged after the singing groups took off and again has grown from strength to strength.
All the men in the woodwork shop have their own personal experience of recovery and most of them didn't know very much about woodworking until getting involved with The Right Key. Over the years they have been commissioned to make instruments and chatty benches but most recently have been working on the pallet project.
The pallet project emerged from making contacts with several people and businesses who had scrap pallets they were going to throw out. Our men were able to suss out what pallets could be recycled and given a new lease of life.
At The Right Key, we especially passionate for recycling and reusing. Instead of just throwing something away, we look to see what use it is; if it can be reused or if we can create something new. To give things a new purpose, value or make something beautiful out of something broken.
It is an analogy that a lot of people in recovery can relate to. They maybe feel broken, like scraps disregarded and through recovery they are able to rebuild their lives, give meaning to brokenness and find a new lease of life.
The men in the workshop have commented that having a project to work on has given them structure, hope and companionship with people in the same boat as them. It allows them to get creative, mock up ideas for how to recycle old wood and gives a sense of achievement when they see the transform take place.
Through the pallet project we have been able to make a range of products such as: planters, seasonal items like snowmen, Christmas trees, easter bunnies and we have more ideas in the making. From rough, scrappy material we have transformed pallets into high quality, strong products that we sell in our gift shop*. The proceedings from our gift shop feed back into the running of the centre and wood-shop, so that our men can continue to met and support each other's recovery while making something beautiful out of something broken.
This video shows the journey of pallets transforming it high quality garden items.
*Please note: many products are made to order, have a waiting time and are dependant on material availability.