We’ve had a packed schedule of courses this summer with three up and running, so our office has become increasingly busy over the past few months!

As autumn arrives Tonya, our new Feminist Lead, is bringing her first Feminism for Change group to a close. The subject matters covered in the course have at times been difficult (‘Shame and Vulnerability, Consent, Power and Control’) but there has also been a lot of laughter and connection as the group have explored their own experiences from the perspective of feminism. We'll be taking stock as we prepare for our second group starting on 31 October.  

We’ve also been running Knowledge for Change and have a brand new intake of NEXT Project participants due to begin on Monday 8 October. We’re delighted to welcome Stephen into the office, who will be joining Tonya, Bob and Liz to help co-facilitate. Like all of our staff and volunteers, Stephen has lived experience and is a graduate of both the NEXT Project and Knowledge for Change.

In our training we talk a lot about the importance of connection and building healthy relationships. This applies as much to those we develop with our bodies as with our selves, friends, family and community. An important part of what we do is enable access to some of the practices that support this with the people we work with. Those with histories of drug and alcohol abuse often experience regular dissociation from their bodies, through childhood or adult trauma, years of continued self-destructive behavior or both.

Yoga is a healing practice that can be used to develop healthy embodiment and establish a foundation for deeper psychological work. It’s what inspired our name and forms a core part of our weekly program every Wednesday.

In August we were lucky enough to host a special “gentle flow” yoga class led by Bob at the Triyoga studio just round the corner from us in Shoreditch. The event was a huge success and raised funds and support for Foundation for Change. We will be hosting another on Friday 7 December, 7pm. The class is open to all, particularly those who are new to yoga or would normally be put off coming to a studio, so save the date and do bring your friends.

Bob says:

Yoga is an incredible way to develop a healthy relationship and connection to your body, but it’s often too expensive or intimidating for people to give it a go. I wanted to teach a class that made it possible for the people we work with to experience yoga, to visit a yoga studio and to bring together different sections of the community that very often don’t get a chance to come together.

For more about the impact of the work we do, see our latest interview with George, about the challenges he had to overcome long after putting down drugs and alcohol, in order to establish a firm foundation for his future.

We've a growing selection of interviews with inspiring people who have graduated from one or more of our courses, in which they share some of their learning and where they've headed next... If you'd like to share your story, get in touch, or have a read if you need an up-lift!

Keep your eyes peeled for some exciting organisational developments we have in the pipeline before the end of the year.

Bob, Liz, Tonya, Bex, Katie, Niki and Stephen