'More relaxed and informed' - friends launch menopause cafes around Norfolk
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
A trio of tea rooms around Norfolk will provide a space for women and their loved ones to openly talk about menopause.
Friends Sheryll Searle and Tracy Attree, from Thorpe St Andrew, were motivated by their own experiences and began looking for spaces where people could meet discuss their experiences to increase awareness and understanding around menopause.
Menopause usually occurs when a woman is between 45 and 55 years old, with around one in 100 women experiencing it before they turn 40. The symptoms, of which there are 32, can begin months or years before periods stop.
Mrs Searle, who met her co-founder at running club, said: "There is a cafe for dementia and other groups, why isn't there for menopause?
"When you start to talk to other women going through the same process, I hope, people will come to the cafe and will leave a little more relaxed and a bit more informed knowing they have lots of different choices."
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She added that she hopes people will be inspired to set up their own cafes, so it spreads out "like a spider web across Norfolk".
Mrs Searle said it not only women affected by menopause and the cafes were also open to men.
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The duo say the cafe, while not a support or counselling group, will be able to signpost to services.
The Menopause Cafe was founded by Rachel Weiss, from Perth, and is a not for profit social franchise, but the friends have found none set up in Norfolk or Suffolk.
They have scheduled six cafe sessions across three locations with the first at the Willow Gallery, in Framingham Earl, on the outskirts of Norwich, on June 30.
Cafe sessions will be held at Willow Gallery, in Framingham Earl, on June 30 and July 28, Prima Rosa, in Salhouse, on July 7 and August 4, and Centre Paws in Wymondham on July 14 and August 11 - subject to the lifting of Covid restrictions at the end of June.
All sessions begin at 10am and will last for around two hours.
Places are limited and tickets can be booked at EventBrite .
Further resources can be found at the Menopause Cafe website or by searching Menopause Cafe Norfolk on Facebook.