Comedy Club member, Peter, performing his debut stand-up routine at the Men’s Centre

Over the past week I’ve seen several of our members, ‘feel the fear but do it anyway’. For instance, Kieran, completed a half-marathon, smashing his target time. I also sat in the audience as four of our members made their debut as stand-up comedians, having worked alongside my colleague Ben, within our Comedy Club. Hats off too to Jason who, having grown his confidence as part of our allotment project (‘Common Plot Pit Stop’), will be attending the first session of the new Pit Stop Kung Fu sessions next Monday evening. These are just a few examples of men who are ‘on the move’ within the MensCraft community.

Having worked as the Norwich Pit Stop Coordinator since November 2021 I have been so impressed and inspired by men who are brave enough to step up. It doesn’t have to be a marathon – it can be as ‘simple’ as walking into the room for our Pit Stop ‘social’ on a Tuesday afternoon for the first time. For many, that is actually a huge step. As a result of being part of this community, I have been inspired to challenge myself.

One example relates to my fear of deep water. Many years ago I pulled a drowning man from a river. Tragically, he died soon after. A few months after  this traumatic experience I went swimming in the sea in Italy. I was fine, then realising I was out of my depth, I started to panic and – gripped by anxiety – I just about managed to swim back to shore. Since that day I have avoided swimming – and I break out in a cold sweat even thinking about it. Anyway, inspired by the strength of the men we work alongside, I have decided to do something about this at long last. I have booked a private swimming pool, and next week, with family members alongside me, I am going to get back in the water and swim. Thanks for the inspiration fellas!

Colin Howey (Norwich Pit Stop Coordinator)