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07 Sep 2022

This project is a collaboration between researchers and artists and will focus on empowering survivors of gender-based violence and abuse. After facilitating creative writing and poetry workshops for women from minoritised backgrounds, we will create a zine, which will be launched at this event.

This project is about shifting the narrative from blaming the victim and recognising that the societal culture of shame exacerbates mental health problems and is a barrier to survivors healing after abuse and violence. We will be collaborating with The Maya Centre, a community-based charity providing free mental health and wellbeing services to women on low incomes whose mental health has been affected by a range of experiences including depression and anxiety, violence against women and girls, inequality, discrimination and racism.


Andreena Leanne, a lived experience speaker, writing workshops facilitator and poet, will facilitate creative writing and poetry workshops for women who identify as Black or PGM and LGBTQ+. These structured 90-minute 6 week writing workshops will focus on 6 key elements of wellbeing each week and encourage taking an active role in one's self-care. Evie (Domestic Abuse Specialist, racial justice activist and freelance journalist) and Zoe (a creative who is the Founder and Editor in Chief at Sweet Thang Zine) will create a zine to provide a platform to share the words of those with lived experience of violence, abuse and mental health, and create a radical guide to self-care pamphlet, which also informs organisations of best practice. We will run a public engagement event to launch the zine and survivors will have the option to share their work in a way that feels right for them with clinical support from The Maya Centre. We will engage a variety of stakeholders through developing a range of outputs and resources including the zine, blogs and podcasts. This project will advance knowledge about violence, abuse and mental health particularly around empowering survivors, through amplifying the voices of those who are underrepresented in this work, especially women from racially minoritised populations.

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