It is wonderful to have sustained our services throughout the pandemic, to reach this point of reopening in person to deliver face-to-face support...Melanie Dottin, clinical director, The Maya Centre
Considering how much the pandemic has affected most people over the last 19 months, it feels more important than ever to come together and mark World Mental Health Day on the 10th October.
However, following the end of restrictions and the slow return to a world of contact, The Maya Centre is back to welcoming clients through our doors and ensuring women get the inclusive emotional support and mental health care they need and deserve.
With things returning to a new normal, we’re marking World Mental Health Day by sharing with you the brilliant projects and groups that we are focusing on delivering in the coming months.
“October 2021 sees The Maya Centre opening its doors to the women of Islington who are minoritised, traumatised and in need of support, says clinical director Melanie Dottin.
“With some limited availability to our bordering boroughs of Haringey, Hackney and Camden, it is wonderful to have sustained our services throughout the pandemic to reach this point of reopening in person to deliver face-to-face support.
“At The Maya Centre we are committed to an inclusive and holistic approach to serving the women who access our services, often in periods of trauma and distress and complex circumstances. It is our intention to ensure that we deliver effective mental health and therapeutic support sustainably with the healing of women at our core.”
Let’s take a look at what we’ve been working on at The Maya Centre…
New website launch
We want the website to be easy for new clients to access and use, which is why we’ve been working on redesigning it over the last few months. On the 28th October, we will be launching The Maya Centre’s brand new, user-friendly website.
An evening event is being held to mark the arrival of the improved website, and to provide a deeper insight into our therapy offers and plans for the future (please note this is invite only).
Welcoming new referral applications again
In case you missed the update on referrals, following a period of unprecedented demand, The Maya Centre referrals waiting list will reopen on the 18th October 2021.
Irish Women’s Project
The Irish Women’s Project is back at The Maya Centre and we are so grateful to the Irish Department for Foreign Affairs for our funding again this year.
“We are proud to say that we never stopped working to support Irish women throughout the Covid lockdown,” says Mary Hefferman, our senior therapist leading the project. “Women who experienced a family bereavement in Ireland and were unable to attend funerals suffered an enormous sense of loss and disconnection.
“Irish people especially value personal contact and communication, so we are delighted to be back to face-to-face sessions – we even have our special masks on to celebrate!”
Black Women’s Therapeutic Group (BWTG)
We are so pleased to announce the relaunch of the BWTG, which commenced in the middle of September, and are delighted that the group is taking place face-to-face.
Participants are being offered 12 weeks of themed weekly sessions that will help them to explore their past and embrace their present, gaining valuable tools that will help them move into their futures. There will be an additional face-to-face group offered in January and opportunity to participate in an online group – check our website for updates.
Psycho-education workshop for all other groups
Therapy is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach and for some women, education around self-care and wellbeing can be equally powerful and healing. From November 2021, we will be offering various 6-week psycho-education workshops in different community languages both within the Maya Centre and via local partner organisations.
Psycho-education sessions are also available as individual one-to-one sessions, and are designed to help women find their voice, understand women’s wellbeing on their own terms and develop a ‘psychological language’ to express their feelings, fears and hopes.
Attending these workshops can also support women who decide to enter therapy to better navigate the process and utilise the therapy space more effectively.
We are fortunate this year to be able to run two 12-week art therapy groups, with our first one fully booked and starting on the 11th October. Our second group is scheduled to start in mid-January 2022.
Art therapy enables clients to access their inner world, thoughts and feelings in a creative, gentle, non-verbal way which can be safely shared with others in a group without the pressure to verbalise traumatic experiences.
The Maya Centre, for the second year running, has been afforded the opportunity to continue working with women who have experienced domestic violence and need a safe space to access support. We offer six support sessions to women who have been referred via the Hearthstone Project in Haringey.
It is an honour to continue our collaboration and help women who have experienced trauma at the hands of a partner or their family.
If you’d like to support The Maya Centre this World Mental Health Day, donations can be made online here.