Join inside out & associates and Hearing Voices Network NSW  for a one-day workshop and learn creative ways of of working with voices with Rai Waddingham!



Some subsidies are available (see registration form for application details)

About this workshop…

Research suggests that hearing voices is a fairly common human experience that isn’t, in itself, a sign of a mental health problem. If we know where to look, voice-hearers can be found in history books, spiritual traditions and popular culture. However, when someone feels overwhelmed by the power and intensity of the voices they hear, knowing that Gandhi and Lady Gaga heard voices doesn’t always help. Equally, a standard list of coping strategies can leave people feel isolated and hopeless rather than empowered.

Whether people feel unable to speak about the voices they hear, are afraid of sharing the details, feel stuck and talking just doesn’t seem to help or simply want to approach things from a different angle – working creatively together can provide some alternative ways to connect. Whether it’s finding a symbolic language that doesn’t trigger difficult voices, creating a playlist to communicate how it feels to hear the voices or drawing on mythology, film or literature to express experiences that are bigger than words – creativity goes beyond artist talent to thinking outside of the box. These strategies can be useful for those supporting adults, young people and children with their experiences.

This workshop explores: a relational approach to voice-hearing; ways of nurturing your own creativity as a supporter; strategies for exploring different aspects of the voice-hearing experience; strategies for coping with distressing voices, emotions and beliefs; ways of using creativity to improve people’s relationships with their experiences and feel more empowered.

About Rachel (Rai) Waddingham…

Rai combines personal experience of trauma, psychosis and hospitalisation with experience gained through training and practice. Having completed the 3 year Open Dialogue training in London, she has worked in the first UK Open Dialogue team combining crisis and community care. A voice-hearer, Rai’s work is rooted in the principles of the Hearing Voices Movement. She has created and managed innovative projects supporting children, young people, families, adults and people in prison who hear voices or have unusual beliefs. She is an international trainer and spokesperson, promoting ethical and creative responses to people in severe distress. Rai is a trustee of the English Hearing Voices Network and Vice Chair of ISPS UK.

About Hearing Voices Network NSW…

Hearing Voices Network NSW is part of the wider Hearing Voices Network a movement of voice hearers, professionals and carers that operates hundreds of self-help groups all around the world. Together, we are united in our mission to promote recovery and reduce the stigma associated with voice hearing voices. More information at

Join us for a half-day workshop where we will explore ways of thinking about the nature of thoughts, experiences and reasoning and what this means for ourselves and our lives.

This workshop will be presented by Sophie Stammers, postdoctoral researcher at Project PERFECT, in the Philosophy Department of the University of Birmingham. In the workshop, we will explore questions in the Philosophy of Mind relevant to theories about, and experiences of, mental health and mental distress. In particular, we will:

  • Use philosophical techniques to critically investigate concepts, ideas and assumptions that arise in mental health discourse and practice. For example, why have some unusual beliefs and experiences been pathologised, while others have not?
  • Explore how cognitions and experiences that are unusual or inaccurate in some respect can be beneficial, as well as costly, and ask who should get to decide.
  • Look at whether doing philosophy together can empower us, and contribute to our work in mental health advocacy and activism.

The workshop will also introduce you to the open access Philosophy of Mind workshop series so you can run your own philosophy group!

All welcome: no prior knowledge or study of philosophy required.

What is Intentional Peer Support (IPS)? IPS is a powerful framework for thinking about and creating transformative relationships.  Practitioners learn to use relationships to see things from new angles, develop greater awareness of personal and relational patterns, and support and challenge each other in trying new things.  IPS is used across the world in settings ranging from peer-run programs to community managed organisations to traditional mental health and human services. IPS comes from a history of grassroots alternatives that focus on building relationships that are mutual, explorative, and conscious of power.

For nearly twenty years, IPS has been inspiring and training people all over the world to be intentional about the way they connect and build mutual relationships. Based on Shery Mead’s book, Intentional Peer Support: An Alternative Approach, IPS Core Training is a 5-day introduction to this innovative framework and is designed to have you practicing right away.  In a highly interactive environment, participants learn the tasks and principles of IPS, examine assumptions about who they are, and explore ways to create relationships in which power is negotiated, co-learning is possible, and support goes beyond traditional notions of “service.”  IPS is all about opening up new ways of seeing, thinking, and doing, and here we examine how to make this possible.

The IPS Core Training is for anyone interested in mutual support and has been widely used as a foundation training for people working in both traditional and alternative mental health settings.  Specific topics covered include: 

  • The 4 tasks: Connection, Worldview, Mutuality & Moving Towards
  • The 3 principles: From helping to learning, individual to relationship, fear to hope
  • History of the Peer Support Movement
  • Rethinking old roles and old ways of relating
  • Understanding the impact of trauma
  • Examining power and privilege
  • Listening from a position of not knowing and for the untold story
  • Talking about suicide and self-harm
  • Moving beyond problem solving
  • Negotiating boundaries and limits
  • Moving towards shared risk and responsibility
  • Looking at crisis as an opportunity
  • Navigating challenging scenarios
  • Sustaining IPS through co-reflection

Book now! Only 5 places left! For a flyer, click on the link below or contact [email protected] or 0435 348 168 to register.

“If I had only a single training to send staff, it would be IPS without hesitation. A must for anybody currently in this field or aspiring to be. To characterize it as a training is a disservice. It was a life-changing event.”

– Jack Bennett, Regional Director, Hudson Valley Recovery Center –

“A life-changing, perspective-altering, mind-opening experience. I now have the tool kit I instinctively knew I needed.”

– Llewellyn Cumming, Regional Recovery Specialist –