7 July 2017, 10 am – 4.30pm, registration from 9.30am
Hackney House, 25-27 Curtain Road, Hackney, London, EC2A 3LT
This unique, one day event, featuring Jacqui Dillon and Rai Waddingham (recently featured on BBC Horizon: Why Did I Go Mad?), explores experiences often dismissed as symptoms of serious mental illness: voices, visions, paranoia, unusual beliefs and altered states, and reframes them as understandable human responses to adversity.
Drawing from personal and professional experiences of madness, healing and recovery, combined with emerging innovative research findings, Jacqui and Rai present an emancipatory approach to understanding and working with distressing experiences that prioritises respect, personal meaning, self-determination and liberation.
Download: Making Sense of Madness Flyer
- Understanding ‘mad’ experiences
- Exploring factors that can contribute to and shape distress
- Alternatives to diagnosis – moving beyond the illness model
- Respectful ways of helping people in distress
- Strategies to survive and thrive
This day is suitable for:
- Anyone interested in understanding more about madness, creativity and the complex spectrum of human experience
- Those involved in supporting another human beinga – whether this is as a friend, ally, family member, colleague, mental health professional, teacher, therapist, social worker, voluntary sector worker, manager or spiritual advisor
- All those with lived experience of madness and distress
- Unwaged: £10
- Voluntary Sector & Self Funding: £90
- Statutory & Commercial: £125
Please get in touch if you’re in a difficult financial position – we may be able to help.
2nd May, 2017, BBC 2 9PM, See: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006mgxf
For hundreds of years, psychiatry has treated voices and hallucinations as an enemy – regarding them as ‘insanity’ or ‘madness’ and seeing them as something to be quashed and even frightened of. But today, new scientific and psychological insights into how the brain works are leading to a radical rethink on what such experiences are – and how they should be treated.
Horizon follows three people living with voices, hallucinations and paranoia, to explore what causes this kind of phenomena. Providing a rare first-hand insight into these experiences, they reveal just what it is like to live with them day to day. They examine the impact of social, biological and environmental influences on conditions traditionally associated with insanity, such as schizophrenia and psychosis, and within the film they look at how new ways of understanding the brain are leading to a dramatic change in treatments and approaches, and examine whether targeting the root causes of psychosis can lead to recovery. Above all, they try to uncover why it happened to them – and whether it could happen to you.
A few folks from our community travelled to Liverpool, England this summer to attend the INTAR 2014 conference (International Network Toward Alternatives and Recovery). The theme of this year’s conference was “Power to Communities: Healing through Social Justice.” Evan Goodchild made an audio recording of Jacqui Dillon‘s Keynote speech: Recovery as Social Action: The Personal is the Political.
Jacqui Dillon is the National Chair of the Hearing Voices Network in England. She has also helped develop HVN USA and has been involved in our Facilitator Trainings.
Listen to Jacqui’s Keynote Talk Here:
Psychoanalyst, psychotherapist and writer Susie Orbach in conversation with writer, campaigner, international speaker and trainer Jacqui Dillon, Chair of the Hearing Voices Network.
This talk was recorded at Wellcome Collection at our Feeling Emotional Friday Late Spectacular on Friday 5 February 2016.
Photo Copyright Grace Gelder
Coming to a town near you: real help for voice hearers
The Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care is pleased to announce that its Hearing Voices Research and Development Fund has received $250,000 in funding for a 3-year project to bring Hearing Voices peer support groups to communities across the United States and to research the mechanisms by which these peer-support groups work.
The project will train more than 100 facilitators in 5 regions of the country and create a stronger regional and local infrastructure of Hearing Voices peer support groups across the US. People who hear voices, see visions, or experience other unusual perceptions, thoughts, or actions have long been diagnosed as psychotic and given a poor prognosis. Medications provide only partial help and their benefits typically diminish over time while destructive physical and psychological side effects become increasingly problematic.
For the past 25 years, the Hearing Voices Network (HVN), an international collaboration of professionals, people with lived experience, and their families and friends has worked to develop an alternative approach to coping with voices, visions, and other extreme states that is empowering and useful and does not start from the assumption of chronic illness (see www.hearing-voices.org, www.hearingvoicesusa.org, www.intervoiceonline.org). A large scientific literature now provides support for key aspects of this approach, and the hundreds of peer-support groups that have developed in 30 countries on 5 continents are enabling voice hearers – even those who have been chronically disabled – to learn to cope more effectively or to rid themselves of the negative effects of their voices.
The US lags far behind other countries in offering this important new approach, and the new funding provides crucial support as more and more mental health organizations across the country seek training to start their own hearing voices peer-support groups. An open competition will be launched in April to choose the 5 project regions, with participants selected using a rigorous model in which mental health professionals and voice hearers collaborate in an intensive shared learning experience that itself illustrates HVN’s concepts and methods.
Equally crucial to the project is an ongoing research component that will allow identification of the distinctive components of hearing voices peer-support groups and better explain what enables them to provide such an effective and positive alternative for people diagnosed with psychosis. “This effort promises to be a movement that will measurably advance mental wellness and recovery for people in distress, their families and the community across the nation,” said Gina Nikkel, President and CEO of the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care. “Hearing voices can be truly terrifying for the person experiencing them and for their loved ones. Hearing Voices Network support groups transform the fear into understanding and then empowerment.”
The Hearing Voices Research and Development Fund is jointly administered by Gail A. Hornstein, Professor of Psychology, Mount Holyoke College, and Jacqui Dillon, National Chair, Hearing Voices Network, England. Their more than 10-year collaboration models the kind of engaged research and advocacy that the project seeks to foster. More background on the project administrators can be found here. Read their recent article on hearing voices groups here.
Key partners in the project include Mount Holyoke College and the Western Massachusetts Recovery Learning Community, based in Holyoke, MA, which has pioneered the training of HVN facilitators in the US as part of its broader mission to “create conditions that can support healing and growth for individuals and the community as a whole.”
- Jacqui Dillon Awarded Honorary Doctorate in Psychology08/02/2018 - 1:04 PM
- Making Sense of Dissociation Raising Awareness & Promoting Healing08/02/2018 - 12:36 PM
- Beck Road Alliance – Share Your Testimony19/06/2017 - 5:57 PM
- Soundcloud Clips from ‘Why Did I Go Mad?’19/06/2017 - 4:43 PM
- Hearing voices, dissociation, and the self: A functional-analytic perspective19/06/2017 - 4:31 PM