Feminism for Change is a 5 week course for women in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction that helps develop self-esteem and awareness through exploring feminist ideas.

Feminism for Change is a free, 5-week course for women in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction, that runs from 10.30 to 14.30 on Wednesdays and Fridays. Over the five week period, there are three, hour-long, one-to-one tutorials to provide additional support and a space in which participants can further reflect on what they are learning.

It provides a safe space for participants to explore and learn about the ways in which gender stereotypes, roles and expectations and gender-based power imbalances have influenced their own behaviour, inter-personal relationships and their relationships with substances. The course particularly helps participants to examine how these issues may impact their ongoing recovery. 

What will participants get out of the course?

The immediate aim is to give participants a different way of understanding their own experiences as women and helps identify their strengths and resistance in surviving as women in an unequal world.

By exploring key concepts and ideas from feminist thought and having the space to apply these to personal experiences, the course aims to help women break free from the cycles of abuse and shame that have often blighted their whole lives. Through the sharing of individual experiences, participants realise that they are not broken, they are part of a broken system.  

The course ultimately provides a safe space for women to talk, reflect and draw from each others' life experiences. The course takes inspiration from the feminist consciousness-raising groups of the 1970s and aims to prove that feminism is for everybody.

"Feminism for Change had an impact on my everyday life in just about every way." - Saida

Who is the course for? 

Suitable candidates for Feminism for Change are those who: 

  • Are at the latter stages of treatment. They may be thinking about their next steps after finishing residential rehab, coming to the end of a day programme, accessing aftercare services or being engaged with Employment Training and Education (ETE).
  • May be on low doses of substitute medication such as methadone, Subutex or Suboxone*
  • Have some support networks in their lives. Given the emotionally demanding nature of the course, we strongly suggest participants have structures such as stable housing and support networks (this might be groups, connections to services, friends/family, accessing counselling/therapy) that will help them commit to the course.
  • Are usually 23 years old or above. We recognise that age doesn’t equal maturity however so we are happy to assess people on a case-by-case basis.
  • Are able to commit to attending each day for the entire duration of the day over the five-week course**.
  • Have access to Zoom and Wi-Fi. We fully support participants to become familiar with Zoom prior to the course starting.

*A low dose for one person may be a high dose for another so we ask that individuals detail their dosage on their application form and be made aware that we will carry out an individual risk assessment. A decision about readiness and suitability will then be made.

**We recognise unexpected events sometimes happen and a day or part of a day may need to be missed. We have an 85% attendance requirement on the course which means that participants can miss up to two days to accommodate this but we strongly recommend aiming to attend every day if possible.

Please note that the above are the guidelines we use to assess suitability. We are aware that there may be exceptions to these and so we endeavour to assess all applicants, risk assessing where necessary, to determine each individual’s suitability to do the course.

What do course graduates move on to afterwards?

Many graduates, after developing an appetite for learning and experiencing the positive life changes that come from being supported to live what they learn, move on to our mixed gender Psychology for Change course. Over the eight weeks of the course, participants begin developing a more solid foundation on which to build the rest of their lives upon and move on to volunteering, further education, and at a later date, employment.

How do people access the course?

Referrals are made via a service or you can self-refer. It's open to all women who are accessing the latter stages of treatment or have accessed treatment for drug or alcohol addiction. 

When is your next intake?

Our next intake begins 7th September 2022 and will be held in person at our offices in Shoreditch, East London

To apply or enquire for more information about the course, contact us: [email protected] or call 020 3490 1818. To apply online, please find our application form here.

"I've started observing myself and the world differently. I've started making changes to my relationships." - Sinead