Since setting up Counselling for Social Change in 2012 we have provided thousands of hours of counselling support to people across the UK. As well as supporting our local community in Cornwall we have worked with a variety of people involved in diverse causes from Extinction Rebellion, the Stansted 11 court case, Black Lives Matter, trans activists, animal rights and community activists.
And now, with the G7 on our doorsteps and Kill the Bill protests taking place across the country, we know we have to step up again and support as many people as we can as they take to the streets to make their diverse voices heard.
Our goal with this crowdfunder is to firstly offer Single Session Counselling support to people in the couple of weeks surrounding the G7 for people involved in opposing the G7 or Kill the Bill. Single Session ‘drop-ins’ with an experienced counsellor can be particularly beneficial to those needing to process actions or dealing with court cases and those involved with intensive organising work.
While one-at-a-time therapy will be enough to help many people process and move through what is currently facing them, for some people this will be not be enough and therefore our ‘stretch-goal’ is to raise more money to provide longer term therapy for those that need it and to provide future single session support around other events.
On 22 October, Mark Thomas will be showing his award-winning show Cuckooed online. The show will be introduced by Mark and followed by a Q&A session with Mark and guests.
Tickets are £5, and if you use this link, and 20% of ticket sales will go to Counselling for Social Change to support our free counselling for activists.
A comedy of betrayal. Mark Thomas tells his true story of how Britain’s biggest arms manufacturer (BAE Systems) came to spy on a comedian. A tale of hubris, planes, demos and undercover deceit told by the award-winning performer.
Fifteen years ago an activist and close friend of Mark’s was exposed as a spy for BAE Systems infiltrating the movement. Now Mark wants to find him and has some questions to ask. This is a true story. The show uses interviews from friends, colleagues, activists and journalists to examine the impact of betrayal.
It is a personal and timely tale that tries to unearth what it means to be spied upon by a corporation under the sanction of the state.
Emily Apple, one of the founders of Counselling for Social Change, has personal experience with Martin Hogbin, the spy at the centre of Cuckooed and is one of the people interviewed in the show.
I loved Martin. He was one of my best friends. I was pregnant when we first found out that he was a spy. We were so close, I had asked him to be the secular godfather to my unborn child.
The pain of that betrayal still sits deep within me. It took me a long time to accept that Martin was a spy and made a myriad of excuses for him. Remember we found out before the undercover policing scandal and the just the idea that Martin could be something he wasn’t, was just, unbelievable.
The feeling that someone you knew and loved was a spy is sickening. I still feel physically sick when I write about Martin. I suffered from PTSD as a result of not only his betrayal, but also the betrayal of other undercover cops I knew. It’s a never-ending grief.
The NHS wasn’t able to help my PTSD. Mental health services have been cut to the bone. And the six sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy I was offered, couldn’t even scratch the surface.
Luckily I had some compensation from an unlawful arrest so I was able to afford private counselling. But my experiences also mean I’m passionate about being able to offer activists free counselling with qualified counsellers.
But it’s not all trauma…
As usual plenty of laughs, some weird characters, documentary styles, probably a tear or two and the vague possibility that Mark might get beaten up in the making of it as he tries to find out if he wants revenge or if he can forgive a friend.
The show won an Edinburgh Fringe First Award, the Amnesty Freedom of Expression Award and ran for a month off Broadway in New York.
So come along (virtually) on 22nd October, support activist counselling, and watch a brilliant and compelling show.
Lucy (pictured) is a trustee with Counselling for Social Change. She has given loads of volunteer time as a counsellor (and trustee) to support people in need and now she's doing even more for our charity by trying to raise money to support up to four people on benefits through counselling support with CSC.
As Lucy said, "I've seen amazing changes in people's lives, through the counselling I and Counselling for Change have provided. To make sure even more people benefit, I've decided to raise money by running the Hackney Half Marathon in London on 8th May."
You can support Lucy and Counselling for Social Change by donating here:
Counselling for Social Change is a registered charity (1160047). We provide long-term emotional support across the UK. Our main aim is to support people on low incomes and those that fight for social justice.
Counselling for Social Change, a low-cost counselling service operating across Cornwall, has just delivered its 1000th counselling session to people on low incomes.
Based in Penzance, Counselling for Social Change provides affordable face-to-face, online and telephone counselling.
Having just celebrated its second birthday, the organisation has now taken on more counsellors and extended its service across the county.
Clayton Elliott, one of the trustees stated:
“It has been really exciting to see our organisation grow. As a small organisation, run entirely by volunteers, it feels great to celebrate the first of many milestones. The work we do, providing emotional and psychological support to people on low-incomes, is really important and I’m very happy to see it growing and reaching more and more people across Cornwall.”
‘Counselling for Social Change’ are taking applications from people interested in coming to our counselling retreat space in West Cornwall. The retreats will be running through the Spring and Summer each year.
The retreats run for 3 nights/4 days (Friday to Monday) in our Shepherd’s Hut near Penzance. The hut is tucked away on a 40 acre Permaculture project and provides a wild and beautiful space to get away.
People are welcome to stay in seclusion or get involved with the day-to-day work on the land.
While there, CSC will be able to offer intensive counselling support. This is a chance to explore issues around activism, burnout and related issues in a safe environment with a trained and qualified counsellor.
The retreat space and the counselling is all free (thanks to some great support from funders) but people will need to pay for their travel down and food/drink etc.
The experience of both retreatants and counsellors has been extremely positive so far.
The Body Politic
The 7th PCSR Psychotherapy & Politics conference
Sat 10th May 2014, 10am-5pm
NCVO, London, N1 9RL
Price: £90/£80 PCSR member/£50 low and un-waged
£10 early bird discount available—see below.
Come and explore how…
• our bodies are shaped by social, political, ecological and economic forces
• we shape our bodies through our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, patterns, actions, allegiances
• our bodies offer connections with the earth and other-than-human and more-than-human life
• we struggle to reclaim our bodies as our own, within the complex networks of power which we inhabit
. . .and what’s all this got to do with being a therapist/client?
The conference will include: keynotes from Relational Body Psychotherapists Shoshi Asheri and Nick Totton, a diverse programme of workshops, the chance to meet other interested
practitioners and to find out more and/or join PCSR—Psychotherapists and Counsellors for Social Responsibility (http://pcsr-uk.ning.com/)
Information and Booking
Use the attached form to book, or for more information please email: Sissy Lykou: email@example.com
Costs: £90 full price / £80 for PCSR members / £50 for those on a low wage/unwaged. Early
bird discount of £10 off the rates above will be available until 15th February—please indicate
the amount you’re paying on the booking form. Cost includes refreshments but not lunch.
Cancellations: Up to 15th February 100% of deposits will be reimbursed, from 16th February 50% of deposits will be reimbursed. From 24th March no deposits will be reimbursed.
Membership information. For more information about PCSR, including becoming a member—so you can register for this conference at a member’s rate—please visit: http://pcsr-uk.ning.com/
Workshops. If you would be interested in offering a workshop on a related body politic theme in exchange for a free place at the conference, please email Kamalamani firstname.lastname@example.org by 28th February 2014.
Accessibility. Our aim is for this conference to be as accessible as possible. Please let us know at the time of booking whether you have any particular requirements. The venue is fully wheelchair accessible, parking is available by prior arrangement and there is an induction loop.
Venue information and how to find NCVO please visit: www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/contact
Please support this petition to achieve meaningful change in the areas of Gender & Sexual Diversities (GSD) & Race to all Training Accreditation Bodies & their Member Organisations in the fields of Counselling, Psychotherapies, & Psychologies