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Thank you to our community 2018

TBRP Happy New Year 2019 message envelope graphic

Each year, we send a letter to the Halifax Courier asking them to thank our communities for their support throughout the previous year. Here is a copy of the letter for 2018.

Dear Editor

It’s the time of year that many of us reflect on the year passing, and look forward to what’s in store for the new year. It’s also a time that we at The Basement Recovery Project (TBRP) say thank you to all those who have helped us over the last 12 months to support people who are affected by the illness of addiction.

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Thank you to our community 2017

TBRP New Year Message for 2018

Each year, we send a letter to the Halifax Courier asking them to thank our communities for their support throughout the previous year. Here is a copy of the letter for 2017 published today:

Dear Editor

It’s the time of year that many of us reflect on the year passing, and look forward to what’s in store for the one ahead. It’s also a time that we at The Basement Recovery Project (TBRP) say thank you to all those who have helped us over the last 12 months to support people who are affected by the illness of addiction. In years past, we have also spoken about the climate that we work in, which has been both positive and negative over the years. However, this year, we would like to comment on the theme of ‘homes’ and what that means to each of us.

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Recovering addict produces video to raise awareness

Recovering addict, Vickie Lee, has produced a video featuring people in recovery from Calderdale and Kirklees, to raise awareness of addiction:

“I made a conscious decision in making this short film as it is something I wish I had been able to access and see a few years ago. I believe education is the key to alerting individuals to the risks associated with substance use and abuse and being able to recognise the signs, in both yourself and in others in your life. This should be done earlier in people’s lives to help reduce the risk of active addiction taking over and robbing you and your family of years of absence and pain.

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I’ve found an internal calmness I never had before

Our Yoga classes in Huddersfield have been a welcomed therapy for those who have given it a go.  Our tutor, Emily, gives us an insight into how it became a way of life for her.

My journey began on the Yoga mat, In 2008 during a very tough period in my life. I was in my second year of University feeling anxious and depressed, struggling to engage in social situations and I often felt afraid to leave my flat. Up until this point, I had been taking various drugs for about 3 years. This took its toll in a way that meant my ability to function in my day to day life became a real struggle. After I accidentally caused a flat fire and broke my wrist on a night out, I realized I needed to journey down a new path, one that would lead me to better mental and physical health.

I started to attend a yoga class, once a week, with a wonderful teacher called Edward. This Yoga class helped me deeply transform my life, I hold my teacher in great reverence, as he taught me so much. I can say to you in all sincerity, yoga and meditation healed me in a way that nothing else ever has. It gave me the ability to be in a safe space with other people while working through challenging emotions. I started to develop a deeper physical awareness of my body and was able to work through some energetic blockages. I became a regular at the class and in 2010 my Teacher advertised a Yoga Teacher Training course. I just had to continue the journey. Initially, the pull to do the yoga teacher training course was more a personal step to deepen my own journey. However, on completion of the 2-year training, I flowed quite freely into a teaching role, I had great gratitude for what I had learnt on the training and felt I would like to share this with others.

Yoga is a way of life, a set of principles that I live my life by. Yoga is mastery over the mind, to guide the spirit to what is called Samadhi (bliss). In a beginner yoga class, we focus on Asanas (postures), Pranayama (breath control), Dhyana (meditation), and of course that wonderful point in the class we all enjoy, relaxation. Yoga has a deep and rich ancient philosophy, originating in India, it is scientifically proven to have great benefit on our mental and physical health. Yoga in Sanskrit means ‘Union’ with the body, mind and soul.

This phrase gets thrown around a lot however in our western culture, without people always fully understanding what that means in all its aspects. The 8 limbs of Yoga are a key point of study for any Yogi (male) or Yogini (female) wanting to take a step further on their journey, and therefore I encourage anyone interested in practising yoga to also understand the philosophy, as it has so much to offer. I have named this practice of Yoga Santosha after one of the limbs of yoga, which means contentment. I believe no matter whether we are a beginner or have been practising for many years, we should remain content and as my yoga teacher use to say, “keep the beginners’ mind”. Yoga is not a religion, it has a moral code of how to live your life. I believe yoga is an open path, one of personal self-discovery, whether Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu or any other religion, you can practise yoga, it is non-sectarian.

In conclusion, Yoga can reveal many life lessons to us, it is ongoing and there is always more to learn, and more to uncover about ourselves. Yoga is a personal experiential journey. If you choose to come to a yoga class, come with an open mind and open heart, this way you will surely receive all that you need from the practice. You may just find some transformational shift begin to happen in your life, one that you never dreamed could be possible.

Emily
Find Emily on Facebook

“I am a complete Yoga novice but thought I’d give it a go… I’ve enjoyed it so much and get so much from it, it is now part of my weekly routine. The class is taught on the teachings of Hatha and Kundalini yoga practises.

The practice brings so much peace to the mind and body through incorporating asanas (yoga postures) with pranayama’s (breathing exercises).  We work on core strength, stretching, balance, repetitive postures, breathing and relaxation techniques. Anyone can join in as the class is open to all levels, you listen to your body and work at the level comfortable to you. It’s a fun and dynamic class.

The Kundalini aspect emphasis’ on breathing, meditation, chanting and tuning into the chakra’s – this is really good for calming the mind and Emily has such a calming relaxing tone to her voice it’s captivating.

I’ve found greater flexibility already in my body although I’m not going to even attempt the headstand !, and an internal calmness I never had before. I love it and hope the Basement is able to make Yoga a permanent fixture.”

Many Thanks
Ninder
Participant

Yoga Classes are run at Union Bank:

Service users: £2
Low waged/Concession: £5 (£25 block booking for 6 weeks)
Usual price: £7 (£35 block booking for 6 weeks)

Intermediate class: Wednesday’s: 6.30pm – 8.00pm
Beginner class: Currently Friday’s but starting 7th September Thursday’s: 6.30pm – 8.00pm

Great to be around like-minded people

I’m really grateful that I was given the opportunity to be part of a wonderful and educational weekend – attending a mutual aid convention in London. It was great to be around like-minded people – many living their clean journey and others wanting and working towards that.

We had quite an amusing journey to London. I think we might have been the loudest people on the train. We were laughing, joking and playing cards all the way there. Someone joked that we were probably ‘the cleanest’ on the train as well! Just goes to show that you don’t need a substance to have fun!

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Thank you to our community 2016

TBRP New Year Message for 2017

Each year, we send a letter to the Halifax Courier asking them to thank the people of Calderdale for their support throughout the previous year. Here is a copy of the letter for 2016:

Dear Editor

Thanks to your continued support over the years, our success in Calderdale has been recognised at a national level. We are now part of an overall integrated system of care in Calderdale – Calderdale Recovery Steps, and this past year we were able to extend our services into Kirklees through two new hubs in Huddersfield and Dewsbury. Read more

Coast to Coast Walk by The Basement Recovery Project

 

TBRP Coast to Coast Walk

Day One

(190 miles to go)

Eight hardy souls set off from Halifax on 17th June with the aim of walking from the West Coast (Irish Sea) to the East Coast (North Sea). What were we thinking?

The journey to our starting point, St Bees in Cumbria, was uneventful apart from finding the only petrol station in England with antique pumps. It would have taken less time to fill up if we had drilled for our own crude oil and refined it. Nevertheless we arrived at our destination for about 11ish, dipped our toes in the sea, picked up our pebbles and did one. It is a custom for coast to coast walkers to take a pebble from one coast and throw it in the sea when they arrive at the other.

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WHAT RECOVERY FROM ALCOHOLISM IS DOING FOR ME TODAY

Ann's Addiction Recovery Story from Alcoholism

Name: Ann
Age: 50
Problem: Alcohol – over 25 years
Abstinent: 13 months (and counting)

I can see now, after working through all aspects of my recovery, with TBRP and AA that I was born an alcoholic. By that I mean I had a reaction to alcohol that produced the addiction, this ‘ism’ that I now understand and recognise completely as being prevalent in me from an early age; the mental compulsion and, most definitely, the spiritual malady.

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Durham Recovery Walk 2015

September was the 26th International National Recovery Month where we as individuals who have reclaimed our lives can really promote and celebrate the virtues of what being in recovery actually means. We do this not just with each other but by offering ourselves as living proof of recovery, a visible presence of hope to those that still suffer whilst challenging stereotypes, judgements and myths about addiction.durham-recovery-walk-2015-the-basement-project5

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Life After Methadone

recovery-times-issue-9---life-after-methadone---ColinMy story featured in RecoveryTimes Issue 3 back in July 2012. I had just come out the other side of a 30 year drug problem, 20 of which was addicted to methadone. I think at that time I had been doing some volunteering and running SMART groups …

As I have continued to get better, my life has too. I started to do more volunteering around the breakfast clubs which take place on a Tuesday and Thursday. I attended training courses on all sorts of subjects including boundaries, safe guarding, recovery, group facilitation etc. I even did a Health and Social Care NVQ level 3 course. I had decided I had something to offer and I really wanted to do more in this field – it felt a natural process. It took a year to do the course.

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Garage Sale Trail

garage-sale-trail-todmordenMark and I had set off on what looked like a misty but promising morning with a miscellany of people’s unwanted items in the back of the van. We had to call at Michelle’s to collect more of the same. I knew there were a couple of bags already at Todmorden that Lisa Stocks had donated. This made a decent collection of bric a brac and one that hopefully had a wide range of goods.

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Dear Alcohol and Drugs

Dear Alcohol and DrugsTBRP-blog-dear-alcohol-and-drugs

The first time we met I was thirteen, I got put in an ambulance and had my stomach pumped but that didn’t stop me from wanting you again.

You made me feel so confident and fearless, I would have the courage to talk to people and do things that I couldn’t do when I was sober.

You helped me in getting the name “wild child”, I did crazy things and people laughed and I thought it was good at first.

I stood up to people; I wasn’t scared of getting hurt.

I had a good social life and was always at parties.

But it wasn’t always like that though, I was sat on my own in my empty house attempting suicide at the end of it.

I lost my son; my family couldn’t stand to see me in the state that I was in.

I wasn’t me anymore; Karla had gone, I was just a shell.

You stripped me of everything that means anything to me, you came before anything – you were always put first.

I was obsessed with you even though you were causing me great pain.

I never ever want to feel that way ever again.

The pain inside was unbearable, enough for me to feel like there was no way out other than to end my life because I couldn’t go on the way I was and never saw myself being able to let go of you.

Today I have been without you for eight months and my life has changed dramatically.

The day dreams that I had are starting to come true. I’m not going to say that everything was your fault, not everybody who drinks and drugs turns out the way that I did.

I don’t have an off button, I am an addict and today come to terms with that and made the decision to not have you in my life any more.

Today I have no room in my life for you, I have my recovery and I have my son and I am happier than I have been in years.

I’M DONE WITH YOU, YOU DON’T CONTROL ME ANYMORE.

GOODBYE FOREVER.
KARLA

 

Article featured in RecoveryTimes issue  8

Recovery in Kirklees

I first came to TBRP @ The Corner 12 months ago with more than my fare share of issues; I was drinking too much, I had problems with my kidneys, under active thyroid, high blood pressure, chronic back pain, depression and to top it all I was feeling really alone and lost.

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Time for a Lecture

Having spent much of our lives in the depths of addiction, we are quite used to getting a lecture or two. So when we were approached by University of Huddersfield to actually deliver one, panic set in. After all, what do we know about addiction? I guessed being “experts by experience” we might have enough knowledge to fill a couple of hours speaking at the award winning University so agreed to drag along a few ‘recoverees’. Here is an account of the day, from Nicola…

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If at first … A Recovery Love Story

I met Cath a couple of months after moving to Burnley. I’d done what they call ‘a geographical’. I thought leaving my drug using friends and family in Scotland would solve all my problems. To be fair, in a way it did. Well, for about two years.

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The Basement Recovery Project Celebrates Five Years in Business

tbrp-birthday-blog-balloonsNow into its 6th year we interview The Basement Recovery Project CEO, Michelle Foster.

In her busy schedule, Richard managed to grab five minutes with Michelle to find out how it all started:

The Basement Project started as a service user group in 2006 with Stuart Honor. At the time I was volunteering with Lifeline, SMS and Probation and I was doing it because I was on sabbatical from university. I got involved with Calderdale User Forum at Christmas 2006 because we used to do Christmas dinners and I just thought ‘that’s where I need to be really.

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Richard’s Story

In some ways I suppose my story’s quite unremarkable but also slightly different than a lot of people’s I’ve met.

I wasn’t trapped in the madness for a long period of time, but over the years I dipped in and out and did spend months at a time in a terrible place. And though knowing what I know now about addiction I realise I have displayed addictive behaviours since I was a child, in later life I didn’t really drink to run away from anything or to seek oblivion (even though some childhood traumas have affected my life in lots of ways); I did however drink to increase my confidence and reduce my shyness.

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Freedom House Goes Large !

Following the success of Freedom House, which began in 2010, TBRP are pleased to announce the addition of a second home for people suffering from addictions.

Freedom House Therapeutic Community is an abstinence-based residential centre based in Calderdale. TBRP has provided 24/7 support by people in recovery, offering a peer-to peer package of care to over 15 people, many of whom are now in employment, managing their own homes and rebuilding family relationships. For some people, the lived-experience is essential for sustained sobriety and Freedom House provides a solid foundation for recovery.

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Basement House Update

TBRP have recently been awarded some funds through the ‘Grants for Health’ scheme and the Community Foundation for Calderdale.

This generous award has provided disabled access facilities and a clinical room to extend the access for more people to address their lifestyle behaviour, beyond that of their substance/alcohol issues.

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Warriors of the Calder Valley

I took a call from a friend in December, who had been contacted by the desperate mother of a 43-year-old daughter. The daughter, who we’ll call Rachel, had been out of a residential rehab for a couple of weeks and was back in a full-blown alcoholic episode, drinking around the clock and falling in and out of taxis and in and out of hospital.

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