Posts

Partnership goes green for mental health awareness week

WY&H HCP is funding 10 Green Social Prescribing Projects, which help connect people to nature to improve their mental and physical health. TBRP is regenerating a disused and neglected piece of land in an area of deprivation…

TBRP Halloween Party 2018

It was fantastic and very heartwarming to see so many old and new faces, all coming together to dance, laugh and sing. The atmosphere was so warm and friendly, which added to the celebration…

Oh we do like to be beside the …

A Big, Big Thank you from us, David and Brenda for our enjoyable day trip to Whitby.

Despite the delays on our outbound journey, we had an amazing, non-eventful and fast journey home.

We cannot ever remember seeing as many people in a resort before, quite a contrast to our time there in January! The fact it was annual Regatta Day and the weather was good compensated.

Embarrassing to say negotiating the wall to wall people and the cobbles made us really recognise our ages, Darby and Joan! Our Boat Trip outside the Harbour was recorded on camera, thank you, Gina. Over lunchtime, we found a fishery recommended by Trip Advisor. Both of us voted they were the best fish and chips we’d eaten in years.

We cannot thank the Basement staff enough for the amazing help and the funding which gives such hope to those who have almost lost hope for recovery in Halifax, Huddersfield and Dewsbury, and for everything they have done and do for the families.

David & Brenda

David and Brenda on board with the Basement Recovery Project in Whitby

 

The Home Run Project – With TBRP

My level of fitness has increased massively and with this, there are the usual benefits; sleeping better, feeling happier, a massive change in my attitude and my overall outlook on life is much brighter. Find out how you can benefit from the Home Run Project, it could be the start to a whole new way of life …

Volunteering with Slow The Flow Calderdale

I’ve just got back from a great walk up Mount Snowdon, alongside 12 friends and the fantastic staff of Activate. At first, when I was asked to do the walk, the usual questions came to the fore – What will I need to wear, can I do it in jeans, etc. The trip was specifically to see the sun setting over Snowdonia…

Snowdon Madness – TBRP Conquers Snowdon

I’ve just got back from a great walk up Mount Snowdon, alongside 12 friends and the fantastic staff of Activate. At first, when I was asked to do the walk, the usual questions came to the fore – What will I need to wear, can I do it in jeans, etc. The trip was specifically to see the sun setting over Snowdonia…

Alcoholism affects the whole family – and so does recovery!

The Basement Recovery Project is and has been an invaluable source of friendship and support not just for my partner as he found his feet in recovery but for the whole family throughout and beyond.

Recovering addicts to cycle 170 miles coast to coast

On Friday 15th September 2017, 14 members of the local recovery community will be coming together to cycle 170 miles from Morecambe to Bridlington over the course of four days. Those taking part have been training for a number of months; prior to which they had little or no experience of cycling any significant distance…

TBRP goes Wild

camping with ActivateBefore coming into recovery my Friday night’s and Saturday mornings would have been spent either watching some rubbish on TV or just wishing the hours away with a book or DVD. Each day was basically a case of existence and reduction of my medication with loads of self-pity thrown in.

Yet in recovery I was asked if I wanted to go ‘Wild Camping’ for 24 hours which involved walking up Pendle Hill and sleeping in the wilds with just a bivvy bag, sleeping bag to lie in and a waterproof camouflage sheet (tied at each corner with rope on to a tree/branch on an incline) to keep the wind and rain off.

At first, I thought they were mad – but I agreed to go and it turned out to be a fantastic experience – although trudging up that hill in a downpour was hard going. I found it really tough on my legs since they have spent more time static than in motion. Yet I can honestly say that the ribbing of each other kept us either laughing. We had a smile on our faces from start to finish.

The views from the top of Pendle Hill, once the rain had stopped, were eye catching – valleys and beautiful countryside for as far as my eyes could see; unspoilt by council estates and housing.

On the Saturday morning, we all had a brew and packed everything away so there no signs of our stay left. Our litter was burned or thrown back into our rucksacks. This time, on the return journey, we hiked around the base of the hill and again the jokes, ribbing and laughter flowed.

I’d like to pick out one of the really funny bits. I could say it was when one of one of the girl’s feet sank into the wet, muddy ground and out came her foot minus her boot. Or when the boss was in her basher (our improvised tent) and she put a net bag over her head (I think maybe it was to keep slugs off – but to be honest she looked hilarious). It’s hard to pick one highlight because it was the whole experience and the slightly mad humour of those that I shared the trip with that was just fantastic.

It was hard going for me but I kept going and completed it, thanks to all who came, for their mental humour, fantastic outlook and the camaraderie.

So, anyone reading this who has been considering any form of recovery activity – I say do it!

You will love the experience and laughter plus all the care and consideration of your fellows and staff in recovery. I was all for dodging activities – but no more! Let the games begin as I will be there and so should you be.

Also, some massive thanks have to go out to Graham, Wayne and John from Activate who led us on this hike and shared their experiences of how to camp out in the wild and leave no footprint! Thank you, to everyone involved!

David.

Tough Mudder 2017 with CiR

calderdale in recovery - tough mudder participantsI had heard of Tough Mudder before, but I can’t say it is something I would have given much thought to in the past. To be perfectly honest, in the past, I was far too consumed by paranoia and self-pity to even consider the idea that Tough Mudder was something I could complete or that it was something that I would actually enjoy doing! When I was still actively using drugs and had not yet found recovery, there was absolutely no chance that it was something I would have done.

Tough Mudder is a brilliant team building event. It is exhilarating and fun. It tests your physical and mental abilities. It is about twelve miles long with about twenty obstacles along the way. Some of the obstacles included electrocution, others jumping into ice cold water and then there were the ones where you had to climb and have the strength to get over them – as well as helping others to get around the course!

I was actually pretty excited when I was asked if I wanted to take part with eleven others from Calderdale in Recovery. Through taking part in few activities since coming into recovery I am (slowly but surely!) learning to overcome any anxieties that I may have around them and just get involved! I am yet to regret it and usually end up really enjoying myself!

The whole day was funny from the minute we got on the mini bus. Jo doing her usual live feeds and Chris putting his heart in soul into singing along to a Vanessa May song!

There are quite a few moments that stood out. It was nice that I was able to help some of the others get around some of the obstacles and it was lovely how grateful they were for my help. There were also moments when I needed help myself – and I was surrounded by fantastic people to support me, all of whom just wanted to make sure that we all made it round. I felt part of a great team; it was a real bonding experience.

At one point, we reached a section called ‘mud mile’ – where you had to clamber over big mounds of mud and through water. They were blasting out ‘Gangham Style’ through the speakers. I turned around to see Jo and Sam dancing away (whilst all the other people around us were looking pretty serious and drained at this point). Next Kev started dancing and I couldn’t help but join in. Every time we got to the top of one the mounds we stopped and danced. I think everyone else thought we were mad – but it was a right laugh. Looking back at the video of this makes me smile and it’ll definitely be a happy memory that stays with me!

I also had loads of fun play fighting in the mud with Jay and Sy. They might take any opportunity to take the mickey – which is usually funny – but I knew that if I needed support at any point doing the obstacles they would be there to help me if they could.

At the end of the day and even still now looking back on it I feel quite proud of myself. I was absolutely shattered at the end of it – but in a good way, like I had achieved something!

If anyone was thinking about getting involved with any of the Calderdale in Recovery activities but were unsure I would encourage them to do it;

Don’t hesitate – life is for living innit!

Luke.

 

LIKE the CiR Facebook Page for more information on CiR and JOIN the group for updates, news, help and advice.

 

Fundraising for a Town Centre Defibrillator

Calderdale in Recovery meet with Holly Lynch MP to discuss fundraising for a new defibrillator for Halifax

Calderdale in Recovery meet with Holly Lynch MP to discuss fundraising for a new defibrillator for Halifax

Within the past week or so we have started promoting a new project within Calderdale in Recovery. The hope is that we will raise enough funds to purchase a defibrillator that will be accessible in Halifax Town Centre 24 hours a day. If someone suffers a heart attack then quick access to this equipment can literally mean life or death.

I’m told that, currently, there are at least 6 accessible defibs in Sowerby Bridge and three in Todmorden (purchased through some impressive fundraising in those local communities) so I find it shocking that we do not have one in Halifax town centre that can be accessed by anyone who needs it at any time of day.

Many of the members of Calderdale in Recovery feel compelled to give something back to our community – something that we already do by supporting local projects such as Incredible Edible and Slow the Flow project. Many people who have seen their lives consumed by drug addiction and alcoholism appreciate the assistance, support and kindness that has helped them to come out the other side. It is also no secret that when in the grip of this horrible illness, individuals can have somewhat negative effects on those closest to them and the wider community – so once abstinent many are keen to give something back and make amends.

We have a few ideas up our sleeves for fundraising and raising awareness and we would really appreciate any donation through the JustGiving page – you never know, it maybe you or a loved one that benefits from a defibrillator in the future!

This week we met with Holly Lynch MP who was thrilled to hear about this project and the work of Calderdale in Recovery – she also gave us some good ideas for how to reach our goals.

If anyone wants to get involved or support this project in any way then they should definitely speak to a Calderdale in Recovery Builder via their Facebook Page! Let’s do this!

Donate

Donate via the JustGiving Page

I Love it When a Plan Comes Together

Saturday 12th August saw a great plan come together at the Kirklees in Recovery Summer Family Day Event, held at Union Bank in Huddersfield.

The event was organised by the KiR steering committee with the help of many volunteers, family members and Haven. Our aim – to remain close to our constitutional aims and objectives – raising awareness of recovery and helping to reduce the stigma associated with addictions, and of course, to raise a little money along the way.

We had a variety of games and stalls to keep people occupied.  Prizes and food were sourced by our ever-growing community of organisations that support Kirklees in Recovery which made for a great raffle and tombola.

We were also supported on the day by members of Halifax Bank who promised to match fund our first £500.  Gillian really got into the spirit (and swing) of things when she took part in the dance lesson, kindly facilitated by Curly Wurly Dance Studios.

The highlight of the day, of course, was watching the families enjoy themselves, the children (and a few adults) had a ball with Peppa Pig and Iggle Piggle and the various activities on offer.

It was heart-warming to hear one girl say, “I’m looking forward to moving back in with my mum”, knowing that she has her mum back for good.

The feedback from everyone involved was great and we also noticed more of the general public and other communities getting involved.

Our thanks go to everyone who helped, attended and made the day special, we raised a terrific £1400.

Cheque Presentation to Kirklees in Recovery

Of special note, we must thank Halifax Bank, for not only match funding £500 but for also presenting a cheque for £5000 to help develop our planned café at Union Bank.  Plans are well underway and we will bring more news soon.  Our support from the Bank also extended to them helping us to enhance our digital skills, a massive thank you to James Stott.

This is what James had to say about the project:

“I must say on a personal level, I was touched and admired the amazing work you and the volunteers do. You are all genuinely inspiring people and I often read about people’s personal struggles but to see it first hand and hear/see what you do took it to a whole new level. I see situations at work where people react to something as if it is life or death when in fact it is minor in the grand scheme of things but to see the job you do is literally life or death for people puts things into perspective and is something I took away from spending a few hours with you and the team. Genuinely – thank you and great work”.

Thank you, everyone!

Andy McGee
Community Builder

 

 

 

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

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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Magical Music Recovery Evening

Calderdale Recovery Steps Music Event

A-musical-festival-todmorden-calderdale-recovery-steps

Calderdale Recovery Steps held its debut gig on Saturday 21st May to raise money for Home-Start Calderdale, a national family support charity that helps parents to build better lives for their children. The musical evening took place in the Gothic splendor of Todmorden Unitarian Church, which was acquired by the Historic Chapels Trust after the church closed in 1987 and restored, and is now a regular meeting place for Incredible Edible Project Todmorden.

For many people music provides solace, inspiration and healing. Tom Petty described it as;

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TBRP takes on Lloyd’s Banking Group

Quiz Night at the Basement Recovery Project - Halifax

Quiz Night at the Basement Recovery Project – Halifax

On 25th of November Lloyds Banking Group held a quiz night at The Basement Recovery Project to raise funds for the project. This followed on from a lunch they had hosted at their head office a couple of weeks earlier. The aim of the lunch was to raise awareness of what we do at TBRP and to help break down stigma surrounding addiction. Myself, Michael and Imelda attended so that we could share our experiences with staff. They had prepared a fantastic buffet lunch, I found myself indulging a little more than I should have, and invited members of staff to pop in, have a nibble and find out what we do. It also gave people the chance to ask questions about addiction and recovery.

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Quizaoke

Quizaoke – Get it wrong, you sing a song!

I was sitting in the office, minding my own business and doing some work on the computer (yes I do do that sometimes!) when one word made my ears prick up, my heart beat faster and had me jumping to my feet. ‘Karaoke’.

Back in the day (before active addiction turned me in to a quivering, self-conscious wreck) Karaoke had been a favourite past time of mine. People tell me I can sing and I have a natural attraction to the limelight. With my confidence returned, thanks to recovery, I was desperate to give it another go!

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Celebration of Recovery

It was a stunning late summer day as I walked down to Halifax Minster.

calderdale-in-recovery---halifax-minsterMaybe a little nervous and apprehensive but mainly excited that this was happening. This was the first time a service to celebrate recovery had been held in Halifax so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. People seemed keen and this gave me the hope there may be a decent turnout.

The choir had set off down before me and they were in their seats and limbering up by the time I arrived. A couple of sound checks later and they seemed ready for the performance. It must have been a little nervy for them as there was still a while before the service started. It didn’t seem like two minutes later when the Deputy Mayor arrived. I introduced myself and explained what the service was about and then I showed him and his consort to their seats. It was pretty much time for the service to start and as I had been distracted I hadn’t noticed how much the church had filled up. I felt a few butterflies now as I knew I would have to speak in front of everybody before too long. I didn’t want to look behind me and have a proper look at how many had come but I had a fair idea.

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Diary of a trip to Eisteddford

Set off from Halifax just after lunch on the road to sunny Wales. Journey was surprisingly incident free. The height of activity was me dropping off a few times on the way. Got to Ruthin and drove around in a circle for a while until we found our hotel. When we finally did find it we were not disappointed. Read more

It’s a tough life in Recovery

The Warm Up

Tough Mudder Boot Camp Weekend

tbrp-tough-mudder-logoThe hardy souls (fools) who were committed to the Tough Mudder challenge set off from Halifax in various vehicles on Friday lunchtime. I and six others found ourselves in the luxury of the fun bus; a mode of transport befitting people of high station and noble enterprise. By Basement standards the journey was uneventful, incident wise, but we did pass through some of the most beautiful and inspiring countryside in Britain. There were the few obligatory wrong turns but nothing of any note. The final leg took us to what seemed like the only building in a fifteen mile radius, fantastic! (that wasn’t sarcasm).

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An Addicts Guide to Inner Space

(How to get out of your mind without chemical assistance)

On Friday the 7th of February fifteen of the Calderdale in Recovery lot gathered together to embark on a weekend of insight into awareness and mindful-self-mastery at the Martinsell Centre in Marlborough. There were a few mixed opinions on the way down as no one was sure of what to expect but we were all in high spirits and going into this with open minds hoping that, from this experience, we might come away with extra tools to help us on our journey to recovery. Well it was definitely an experience, that’s for sure! Never have I laughed so much in my life and I’m not just talking about laughing I’m talking about proper belly laughs right from the deepest part of the stomach and it made me feel amazing, I’m still laughing a few weeks on!

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Calderdale Inter-Services Football Tournament 2014

In the lead up to the World Cup this summer The Basement Recovery Project, in partnership with Foundation and the Job Centre organised a football tournament to bring individuals together who use the various services across the Calderdale area.

Taking part were teams from Lifeline, Conn3ct, TBRP together with two teams from Foundation (Lancashire and Leeds) who sponsored the event.

It was a great event and some close matches being played, but the TBRP team went on to win the final match. Well done guys !

Shantstock Live 2014

Halifax felt the festival vibes in a Shantstock Live music marathon with performances from a host of artists.

In an outdoor concert at The Shant pub, Holmfield, crowds were entertained by local bands and soloists in a 12-hour fundraising music session for two local charities; The Basement Recovery Project and Overgate Hospice.

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Recovery Gets Ancient

Qi Gong (Chi Kung) is the ancient Chinese practice of meditation through movement and concentrates on the focussing and movement of energy around the body, the words Qi Gong translate as energy cultivating and the practice is the basis for the martial arts such as Tai Chi and Kung Fu.

Made up of three parts; posture (stationary or moving), breathing techniques and mental focus Qi Gong is used to cleanse the body, circulate and store energy (Qi) and also to pass on cleansing and healing energies to other people.

National Recovery Walk Birmingham

On a (surprisingly) sunny Sunday near the end of September them fearless Basement chaps set off for the annual Recovery Walk which was to be held that year in the tropical climes of Birmingham and which promised the usual blend of fun, insanity and flawless organisation.

Recovery_walk_Birmingham1

This last element (organisational perfection) was proven to be evident very early on as not one but two coaches arrived to whisk the ebullient assembly with all speed and luxury off to the Midlands. However, this excess of transport did little to dampen spirits or call forth omens of disastrous futures and everyone piled on to the selected coach full of hope, optimism and quite a lot of tea.

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