HV Workshop #2: Working With Voices – OSHAWA 25th-26th Jan 2018

This two-day workshop will give you a practical, “hands-on”  introduction to a handful approaches you can use singly or in combination when supporting a person who has asked you to walk alongside them as they begin their work exploring and making sense of their uniquely personal experience  with voices visions and whatever other experiences they might live with that can be difficult to live with – made more difficult by such experiences having become mystified, and yet which are surprisingly both very common and very understandable in context of a person’s life.

This is a completely non-diagnostic, non-medical workshop – it is a workshop about being human in this world.

Whether you regard a person hearing voices as an illness or not is, really, a moot point- because either way it is a human experience. This workshop focuses on what we might experience and ways of exploring and making sense of whatever we do experience.


If you have not done so already then you will need to first participate in our Workshop #1 Accepting Voices which provides foundation, language for the work we do together in this workshop.

We currently have two opportunities to participate in Accepting Voices, in Oct and Nov 2017 – see here

Community Partners

This workshop is made possible through community partnership with CMHA Durham, we are grateful for use of their space and for their ability to connect with community in Durham region and beyond.

Register NOW online

Early Bird   $300  until 31st Oct.
Standard    $400

To register your place NOW,
Either click on the giraffe, or click on / copy-n-paste the link below…

More Information

Full Description below the poster, also link to easy print [pdf] version.


Please feel free to share our poster and any of the information here, we’re always grateful when people do. 
Easy print poster [pdf] :



A Two-Day Workshop

This workshop follows on from Workshop #1: Accepting Voices.

If you have been offering yourself as a “one-person-safe-space” and you find yourself privileged by someone taking you up on your offer and asking you to walk alongside them as they do their work, then you might find yourself asking “ok what kind of things might we do together?”.

This workshop is about just that and offers you an introduction and enable you better to:

  • Share your unshakeable belief that voices can be understood in simple terms and in context of life- a whole life.
  • Support people who have chosen to do the sometimes difficult work of emancipating themselves, and learning to make changes in their relationship with difficult experiences that they live with.
  • Share ideas and support a person by sharing selecting and working through practical approaches that enable them to explore, name, and make sense of their uniquely personal experience, to reclaim and use their power, and to write a new story of their life.

Includes introduction to and practical hands on experience using : Voice Mapping, Voice Profiling, Maastricht Interview, Voice Dialogue, and Non Violent Communication.

Full Description

Do you…?

  • Work with people who hear voices and who struggle with their experience of that?
  • Have someone in your life who hears difficult voices and who struggles with difficult experiences like that get called “psychosis.
  • Feel confident in your belief that voices are real
    and in your ability to offer acceptance and hope.
  • Begin normalize difficult experiences and person’s ability to make sense of their own
  • Feel weary of the notion that we must fear ourselves and fear each other?
  • Feel ready to take your next steps in supporting individuals in working with their voices ?
  • Feel ready to learn more, ask yourself “what else can I do?”.
  • Want to know more about how you can be part of the future, join us in enacting a world that understands?

Are you ready to take your next steps?

If so, then this workshop might help you further tilt your universe and emancipate yourself with deeper understanding,

This workshop is designed to share useful material but mostly to help you be more open, curious and willing to learn about a person’s own experience – to deepen and broaden your own ability to understand so that you can join us in enacting a world that understands voice hearing, supports the needs of individuals who hear voices and views them as full citizens.

If more of us were able to work with voices then fewer of us would need a career as patients.

Join us in enacting a world that understands…


Workshop Description

This workshop:

  • follows on from Workshop #1 Accepting Voices, in which you learned how this work begins when we offer ourselves as a one-person safe space to a person who hears voices and struggles with that.
  • will enable you to continue that work with increasing confidence, sharing your belief that voices can be understood in simple terms and in context of a life; supporting people who chosen to do the sometimes difficult work to emancipate themselves, and learn to make changes in their own experience.
  • offers a solid introduction to important practical approaches that can aid in a person finding their own power to change their relationship with voices they find troubling. These include: voice mapping, voice profiling, Maastricht Interview, voice dialogue, and Non-Violent Communication.

What we share is not a prescriptive, linear process but a framework for navigating as we walk alongside a person as they embark on their unique “adventure in unveiling” learning to make choices and find what “works for me” and reclaim their power.

We will introduce and practice key approaches that can be thought of as building blocks to be used creatively to extend and deepen the safe space you can co-create together.

We share information and resources that will add to your repertoire of stories, ideas, resources, approaches that you can share, and enrich the work you can offer to do with a person inside that safe space.

This workshop will enable you better to…

  • Increase and deepen your own understanding of hearing voices as a normal human experience, maybe not shared by everyone, but part of what it means to be human.
  • Share information about who hears voices helping to demystify the phenomena and start conversations about how it is part of being human.
  • Develop a deeper understanding of the role voices can play in trauma.
  • Begin to work with approaches that can help discover how voices may be related to life struggles, offer powerful insight and clues to what a person can do to make changes.
  • Offer yourself as guide or partner for a person you support – walking alongside a person who chooses to work with the voices they hear.
  • Work with practical approaches for working with voices that can enable a person to find their power to reclaim their life and make changes in their own experience.
  • Reflect on and share your own challenges, learning, assumptions, and growth as a human being and in any of your roles.

Who this workshop is designed for

Essentially this workshop is designed for workers who spend regular time with individuals who hear voices and struggle with their experience, including doctors, therapists, counsellors, peer-workers community workers – anyone working in the health system, mental health services.

It can also be suitable for anyone who spends time supporting someone who struggles with voices and yet does not get paid for their work – and who wants to deepen and expand their own understanding of the roles voices can play in a person’s life, ways of understanding, key information, and ways of engaging that can support a person working with their voices.

So, if you encounter people who struggle with the voices they hear and feel you need to understand, and you are ready to play your role in enacting a world that understands, then you may decide this workshop is for you.

Working with voices is always a choice that can only be made by the person hearing voices.

We open ourselves to exploring our own experiences using that to connect with others, willing to share our own vulnerabilities, yet always remembering and recognizing that it is the person we support who is doing the hard work.

Workshop design…

This is an intensive, highly practical and experiential workshop- a learning circle in which we learn with and from each other.

We will share a number of approaches that can be used singly or in any combination but the real learning comes from how we engage together. For each of the approaches we will…

  • share key ideas, tools and resources;
  • immerse ourselves in practical exercises to explore the approaches and techniques
  • engage in deep personal reflection, shared sense making and dialogue…

A creative approach

This is not presented as therapy or a manualized approach but the material and ideas do lend themselves to being integrated into counselling or therapy work; some are structured, some very intuitive, iterative and creative.

This work is not so much with adhering to techniques, or following steps as seeing these approaches as ways to build relationship, explore, learn together, always letting the person you support take the lead, make choices, find and use their power.

A framework / a map

We share this map based on work by Dr Marius Romme, as a tool for navigating the landscape as we walk alongside a person who choses to work with their voices. 

Topics included

We spend time sharing key ideas, resources and practice in each of these topics

  • Holding Safe-enough space
  • Voices and Trauma
  • Voice Mapping
  • Voice profiling
  • Maastricht Interview
  • Non-Violent Communication
  • Voice Dialogue

An Immersive experience

Over the two days we will build practice experiencing the approaches, putting them together and exploring and making sense, and open ourselves to our own inner landscape to inform how we connect and work with a person who might be struggling and chooses us to walk alongside them as they work with their voices.



Kevin Healey

Has been hearing voices for over forty years and for almost ten has played a key role in establishing Hearing Voices Network in Toronto and supporting others do the same where they live in Canada.

Founder and facilitator for the Toronto Hearing Voices group, one of the longest running in N. America.

Collaborating with artist Dora Garcia founded Hearing Voices Café, Toronto – the world’s first as a regular feature in a city landscape, followed by  others now in Valladolid and [coming soon], Paris and London.

Privileged to have introduced around 500 people to WRAP – a way of finding answers to questions like “what works for me?” and “what else can I do?” and as a process for taking back our own power. Now coaches, mentors and trains WRAP facilitators.

Led the design, development and delivery of Peer Support Training for a leading MH charity; rooted in human values and simple ideas like “peer means equal” and fully aligned with the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s guidelines and recovery principles.

As a speaker is regularly sought to speak at AGMs, Grand Rounds in major hospitals, conferences, in media: print, radio TV, talking about understanding difficult human experiences; recovery; Hearing Voices and inviting people to a different kind of conversation about what it sometimes means to live as a human in this world.

Dave Umbongo

For years Dave would only say only one word, now he authors articles at http://www.recoverynet.ca and moderates online support groups for voices to talk directly with each other round the world, coaches and co-presents in workshops for approaches like voice dialogue.

Enjoys creating memes: out of things voices say, about living in a universe that mostly comprises what he refers to as The Weird, and sharing his own wry observations on the human obsession with calling each another horrible names, categorizing and crushing each other into boxes that don’t fit.

Voices have stories too His favourite pastime is pretending to be a muppet, next is remarking upon how “voices” and “humans” behave in ways that are often very much alike. “The Dave” doesn’t really have a bio – like other superheroes he has an “Origins Story”, and like “The Truth” some of it is already “Out there”.

What others have said about this workshop

  • “Wow! Just Wow!”
  • “Super-fabulous! Indispensable!  Exciting!  Motivating!  Skill & confidence-building!
  • the space created for the workshop was “safe enough” for me to take some risks and participate in ways that I might have otherwise not, had I not felt safe and supported in my learning environment.”
  • “I wanted a deeper understand of the role voices can play in trauma – I AM WELL ON MY WAY.”
  • “I resonate with mapping. This was a wonderful visual teaching tool for me personally in terms of contextualizing the “parts”.
  • “Introduction to the framework was absolutely refreshing and exciting to learn about.”
  • I am so grateful for this resource as a teaching tool.”
  • Incredibly informative practical experience having the opportunity to interview Dave, The DrKens, and Woolfie. Many thanks for their willingness and participation.” 
  • This was a very liberating key idea: taking the position of curious observer, getting to know the voices as individuals in their own right with and individual narrative, story to tell, and knowledge to impart.” 
  • Knowing that there is an alternative framework, than typical medical model, which empowers both individual and worker to understanding and work with voice hearing.”
  • “It is an empowering, hope-instilling and successful framework.  It doesn’t get better than that.”
  • “I learned it’s not about having tools or what we do, it’s about how we listen.”

Please note. This workshop follows on from Workshop #1 Accepting Voices which provides a foundation for this work. If you have not already attended this we are offering it Fri 14th October 2016. 

Wkshp.2-Working With Voices-Jan2018-Full Description-easy print .

About recoverynetwork:Toronto

We believe people can and do recover from "mental illness" - because we are living it. We believe in the power of supporting each other: learning from and with each other. You are welcome to join us..
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