Welcome to new staff
We welcome five new starters – Clinical Supervisor: Anthea Benjamin, Counsellors, Zenepe Mehmeti and Dilek Aygun, Dance movement psychotherapy trainee: Matilda Tonkin-Wells, Psychoeducation workshop facilitator: Jesica Calvo.
We’ve also recruited five new volunteers who’ll support the delivery of Maya Centre services in a variety of roles: Chantice, who'll be supporting our service users open evenings and events, and Ronak, Mayessi, Peniel and Dione in admin and reception roles.
Thank you & Goodbye to the following volunteers
Manisha continues to support us to deliver the 'I am Project' and assisting in preparation for our new database roll-out. Jess, who after six months of administration support has a new supporting role of co-facilitator for Maya Centre's 'I am' project in January 2018.
We say goodbye to Judy who has moved on to a paid role to support volunteers and Huy Jin- who moved to Liverpool.
Thank you to all our volunteers for your hard work and commitment to our centre throughout 2017.
On the 12th of October 2017, we celebrated thirty-three years of our counselling service. Our friends at The Literary Consultancy kindly hosted our 'Women's Unheard Voices’ fundraising event in memory of Rebecca Swift. We had a full house of supporters & friends, with a great night had by all at the Free Word Centre. We would like to thank everyone who made this event possible from our supporters for giving so generously, and to all who donated to our auction, helping us to raise a wonderful total of £6,590
A special thank you to Edie Campbell for leading the tribute to Rebecca Swift, with readings from Rebecca's touching poetry.
With a panel on the theme of the evening, 'Women's Unheard Voices: Who is Listening?' chaired by renowned journalist and broadcaster Melissa Benn, who was joined by: acclaimed novelist Louise Doughty (Apple Tree Yard, now a major BBC series); Professor Catherine Campbell (LSE); Psychotherapist & speaker Dawn Estefan; bestselling author and writing mentor Jill Dawson (Fred & Edie, The Crime Writer); and writer and Director Aki Schilz (The Literary Consultancy).
The audience listened to a heartfelt audio statement from one of our clients:
'Women don't get heard, it is time for women to be heard as the traumas they go through, they take as their shame'. Which sums up the thought cycle we aim to break, enabling women to speak and process their past for a better future. You can listen to this client's audio recording and others here
We had a special performance by Rachel Long - Poet, Facilitator, Curator, Leader of Octavia, reading a Triptych entitled 'My Body'. Singer Teish O' Day, along with acoustic guitarist, Kevin Ellis, blew us away with a cover of Joan Armatrading's, 'Show Some Emotion'.
Georgina Hilton from Christie's led the auction, with competitive bidding and plenty of laughter. Great items went under the hammer, including; tickets to see Apologia Play, 1:1 coaching session with Kit de Waal, Tea and tour at the House of Lords with Baroness Massey, a one hour flying lesson taking off from Elstree Arodome, a week in a country house with literary connections, 1st edition books by authors Jill Dawson and Louise Doughty, a week in a country cottage in Suffolk, tickets to Cinderella at Sadlers Wells and three jars of jam made especially by Jeremy Corbyn!
A special thank you to our sponsors, Aki Schilz and Joe Sedgwick from The Literary Consultancy & Free Word Centre for providing a fantastic venue for such a memorable evening. The manager at Sainsbury’s Local, Holloway Road for providing the wine & nibbles.
On behalf of the Maya Centre staff, trustees, clients and patrons we would like to say a big thank you to all who took part and supported our special event - Family of Rebecca Swift, Edie Campbell, Chair and Panel: Melissa Benn, Aki Schilz, Louise Doughty, Professor Catherine Campbell, Dawn Estefan and Jill Dawson. Auctioneer: Georgina Hilton, Performers: Rachel Long, Teish O'Day and Kevin Ellis.Client: Kim for allowing the use of her recording, and volunteers: Manisha Jha & Chantice Gervais.
The money raised will help us to support more women in getting their voices heard.
This year our CORE scores demonstrate a marked improvement for our clients in all four areas of Functioning, Problems, Risk to self and others and Emotional well-being. Following their period of counselling:
Achievements and performance in 2016-17
We have maintained our external accreditation from APPTS, the accreditation scheme run by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and our accreditation from the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy for our counselling service, demonstrating to clients, commissioners and funders that they can have confidence in the professionalism of the centre and its staff.
The Maya Centre’s core work continues to be individual psycho-dynamic based therapy for women, where clients can currently receive up to 24 sessions of counselling. Primarily our clients are those who have experienced trauma, gender based violence and/or mental health issues abuse or harm.
The number of clients receiving an assessment increased by 142% compared with the previous year, and the number of clients who received 1:1 therapy increased by 25%.
Although this year’s income was down on last year by 10%, due to generic funding cuts across the charity sector, we have been able to support more women, as a result of continuing to develop our intake and assessment procedures. It can, therefore, be inferred that once a client signs up to engage with services from the Maya Centre they will ‘stay the course’ with their counselling journey for maximum benefit and our funding will have the maximum possible impact.
Referrals received: 369 (97.33% increase on 2015/16)
Total number of Assessments 2016/17: 276 (142.11% increase on 2015/16)
Total number of 1:1 sessions attended: 2,422 (15.28% increase on 2015/16)
Total number of clients: 170 women (25% increase on 2015/16)
A number of our clients have experience of multi-layered traumas and as such have complex needs, therefore we aim to support them further by giving access to therapeutic groups, workshops, dance movement, art therapy groups and complementary therapies.
Due to the financial support from our funders we've been able to further develop our provision of group counselling, and now deliver the following groups:
36 week counselling group for Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse, 20 week Black Women’s group, and a 20 week Art Therapy group.
What difference do our services make
At the Maya Centre, we continue to use the nationally recognised Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation - CORE to measure the impact of our work.
- 84% of clients show an improvement in their ability to express their feelings or problems;
- 90% of clients show an improvement in their ability to verbalise and deal with their traumatic experiences;
- 64% of clients have improved day to day functioning and self-esteem;
- 84% had better personal insight and understanding of themselves with a reduced likelihood of remaining in/re-entering an abusive relationship
Black Woman's Therapeutic Group
After a successful 20-week pilot group in January 2017, we are pleased to have secured funding for the next group starting in January 2018. The group provides a safe space for black women to connect with each other; listen and talk about issues from their perspective. A range of topics will be explored including; Relationships, motherhood, depression and mental health, separation and loss as well as self-esteem and perceptions of others of black women.
Thank you to KirzArt for allowing us to use this digital illustration.
Community support update
~ I am Project weekly workshop ~
Now in its 5th round and our last session for this year took place on 30th November. Recruitment has started for women to join next year’s group which will be on Monday evenings.
In the new year, the Maya Centre will also be running the “I am” project in collaboration with Triangle Children's Centre to be held on Wednesday mornings at Triangle Centre in Haringey.
This group is fantastic for women with young children, as the centre has creche facility. The sessions are open to women from Islington and surrounding boroughs.
If you would like to join the Monday evening or the Triangle Wednesday morning groups, please do get in touch with Michalina@mayacentre.org.uk
~ Outreach sessions at local schools ~
Drayton Park and Duncombe Primary School invited our community support worker to their coffee mornings to run a session on emotional well-being and self- care for parents.
''It was great pleasure to meet all the parents and great fun to run emotional well being and self- care activities'' said Michalina, Maya's community support worker. Parents told us that they enjoyed the session and would like to take part in more similar activities.
Some of the feedback we received:
“All the information was really good and exercise was excellent”
“Thanks for your time to get us engaged on a matter that's really relevant and provides knowledge”
“I liked discussing and talking about our well-being”
~Summer Open Day~
The theme of our summer open day was women’s mental health, combining psychoeducation, group discussion and self- care activities. The key focus centred on perceptions and understanding of mental health.
Prior to the evening, all female visitors to the Maya Centre had been invited to add their thoughts to our mental health post-it wall. This formed the basis for our debate which was hosted by our counsellor Dawn Estefan. The wall sparked lots of conversations around experiences of mental health difficulties, shame, stigma, impact on self -worth and self –perception and the wider family/community/social context of mental health.
The programme included a body percussion/rhythm session, a feel-good exercise taken from the “I am “Project called the 'Well of strengths', a presentation on the subject of women and mental health by our Deputy Director and clinical lead, Justine Sayang.
You can read more about the 2017 summer open day and feedback from our clients here >
Thank you to all clients who contributed to the debate,Vicky who ran the excellent body rhythm workshop, Lindt chocolate and Body Shop for providing free samples to support our activities, and all of our volunteers who supported the evening.
We are very grateful for the continued support from our patrons, friends, supporters and charitable trusts which provide the greater part of our income. While there is considerable pressure on our finances we remain optimistic that the quality, reputation, and continued efficiency of our services to vulnerable women will ensure that this work will be supported into the future.
We hope you have a wonderful festive break and best wishes for the New Year!