Covid-19 Lessons for Ourselves and Aid Work

This week I’ve been sensing increased uneasiness and despair among the British population, due in part to the uncertainty of when lockdown will end and when we’ll ever be able to fully enjoy the sunshine or give our loved ones a hug. Meanwhile, the endless stream of upsetting news continues, with constant reminders not only … Read more

Healing Trauma through the Body

In the last week I’ve been following, when I can, the online Embodied Trauma conference. This was an essential, ground-breaking initiative that challenges the purely psychotherapeutic model for treating trauma, by delving into the body’s capacity to heal through awareness and experiencing that surpasses mere cognitive or verbal cues and explanations.  It this respect it … Read more

Lessons and Reflections on Healing Solidarity

The perils of projectisation, how we embody our activism and push for a right to rest, what it means to truly listen and meet the other person where they are, challenging masculine behaviour and discourse in aid; these were just some of the many conversations taking place at the Healing Solidarity conference last week. This … Read more

Healing Solidarity and what’s to come on Life in Crisis

Today I am providing a quick update on my work on stress in the aid sector, and news of an exciting, inspiring and innovative conference coming up next week, which everyone can join and participate in! These last few weeks I’ve reached that point that many doctoral researchers will be familiar with; where the Phd … Read more

Reflections on the Idealist’s Survival Kit

I have just finished reading The Idealist’s Survival Kit by Alessandra Pigni, a collection of ideas, reflections and tools for understanding and responding to burnout. The book, which is divided into 75 bite-sized chunks containing accounts from aid workers and activists, poetry and passages or quotes from the likes of Brene Brown, Thich Nhat Hanh, … Read more

Understanding the Spiritual Lives of Aid Workers

Isn’t it about time aid organisations paid more attention to the spiritual lives of their staff? After all, it is often faith of one sort or another that is guiding the work of aid professionals. With approximately 90% of the aid sector being made up of people from non-western countries, I think it is safe … Read more

Beyond Hope and Fear

Who out there shares my observation that there seems to be an awful lot of despair being expressed in the world at the moment, and that it’s not leading to much in the way of informed and inspiring action? Whilst I understand there have been exceptions – notably the Women’s March in the United States, … Read more

Wild Zen and a Journey through Aid Worker Archetypes

I recently finished reading the book Wild Zen: An Inner Roadmap to Humanity by Claire Higgins, which charts the experiences of humanitarian workers, including herself, and others who have undergone – and been transformed by – trauma, violence and other forms of extreme suffering. Claire worked for more than ten years on humanitarian and human … Read more