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Dwell Time Issue 1

Dwell Time Issue 1 Dwell Time arose from tragic death by suicide of one of our close friends in 2017. He was a passionate advocate of arts being a tool to discuss mental health and bequest us the task of raising awareness of mental health through our work as artists and curators. Art, poetry and…

Edmonia Lewis #BlackHistoryMonth

The first professional African-American and Native-American sculptor, Edmonia Lewis earned critical praise for work that explored religious and classical themes. Synopsis Edmonia Lewis was born in 1844 in Greenbush, New York. Her first notable commercial success was a bust of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw. The money she earned selling copies of the bust allowed her…

Richard Wright #BlackHistoryMonth

Pioneering African American writer Richard Wright is best known for the classic texts ‘Black Boy’ and ‘Native Son.’ Who Was Richard Wright? Richard Wright was an African American writer and poet who published his first short story at the age of 16. Later, he found employment with the Federal Writers’ Project and received critical acclaim…

Barbara Jordan #BlackHistoryMonth

Barbara Jordan was a U.S. congressional representative from Texas and was the first African American congresswoman to come from the Deep South. Who Was Barbara Jordan? Born on February 21, 1936, in Houston, Texas, Barbara Jordan was a lawyer and educator who was a congresswoman from 1972 to 1978—the first African-American congresswoman to come from…

Ernest Everett Just #BlackHistoryMonth

Earnest Everett Just was an African-American biologist and educator best known for his pioneering work in the physiology of development, especially in fertilisation. Synopsis Born on August 14, 1883, in Charleston, South Carolina, Earnest Everett Just was an African-American biologist and educator who pioneered many areas on the physiology of development, including fertilisation, experimental parthenogenesis,…

Dorothy Johnson Vaughan #BlackHistoryMonth

Dorothy Johnson Vaughan worked as a mathematician on the SCOUT Launch Vehicle Program that sent America’s first satellites into space. Who Was Dorothy Johnson Vaughan? Dorothy Johnson Vaughan was an African American mathematics teacher who became one of the leading mathematical engineers in early days of the aerospace industry. After the U.S. defence industry desegregated,…

Marsha P. Johnson #BlackHistoryMonth

Marsha P. Johnson was an African American transgender woman and revolutionary LGBTQ rights activist. She is credited for being an instigator in the Stonewall riots. Who Was Marsha P. Johnson? Marsha P. Johnson was an African American transgender women who was an LGBTQ rights activist and an outspoken advocate for trans people of colour. Johnson…

Margaret Busby publisher #BlackHistoryMonth

Born in Accra in the Gold Coast to parents with roots in Barbados, Trinidad and Dominica, she became Britain’s youngest and first Black woman book publisher, when in 1967 she co-founded Allison & Busby with Clive Allison (1944-2011). “We started off with virtually no money and thought we would go into making volumes of poetry…

My volunteering experience at Hamari Yaadain Dementia Café

Before coming to Touchstone, I was not unfamiliar with being around individuals living with dementia; my grandfather was diagnosed 5 years ago, and I have seen first-hand how his condition has progressed, and the effects this has had on him and other family members. While my grandparents are regular attendees of the group, I had…

World Suicide Prevention day Blog September 2019

10th September is World Suicide Prevention Day. It is also the day Leeds will launch its latest Suicide Audit findings from 2014-2016, alongside information on the work the City is funding to support suicide prevention; including our own Mentally Healthy Leeds. According to the Alliance of Suicide Prevention Charities (TASC), suicide is the greatest cause…

#PartnersInPride: Touchstone Taking Pride in Mental Health at Leeds Pride 2019

Another year, another fabulous show of Touchstone supporting the LGBT+ community at Leeds Pride! Partnering with Leeds Mind, Live Well Leeds, and Community Links, this year our #PartnersInPride saw a great turn out for the biggest parade ever seen at Leeds Pride, with 130 companies parading and over 60,000 spectators. P.S. Ours was the big…

Xine Magazine

Check out Xine, a new quarterly magazine from Non-Binary Action. https://nonbinaryaction.org/xine Non-Binary Action campaigns for the rights and respect of non-binary people and other marginalised groups. Xine is a quarterly publication from Non-Binary Action to share articles, interviews, reviews, poetry, art, stories and other work by non-binary people across the world.        

Sharing Good Practice Working With BAME Clients In IAPT

In June here at Touchstone we were asked to present a workshop at the PWP National Networking Forum for IAPT in Birmingham. Aniysa Azam (Senior PWP) and myself (Deputy Manager) went and shared the Touchstone PWP team’s learning over the last 6 years on topics of: common challenges in delivering a good quality and equitable service to clients from Black…

Why Yorkshire? By Iby Knill

              For Yorkshire Day 2019, we interviewed Iby Knill on her experiences and reasons for moving to Yorkshire in the 1960’s. “It was 1962. I was employed as Welfare Training Officer by Berkshire County. Then, one day, somebody at County Headquarters thought that it might be an idea to…

Malala Day

Malala Yousafzai as a young girl in Pakistan was a promoter of  women’s education in Pakistan.   In October 2012, aged 15, she was shot in the head and left in a critical condition by the Taliban after they had issued a death threat on her. She was sent for treatment to a UK hospital,…

I-ART Exhibition ‘Good Enough’ by Kat Archibald

Leeds Artist, Kat Archibald, brings selected highlight from her exhibition ‘Good Enough’ to the Touchstone IAPT therapy service. Just in time for the Women’s World Cup she is showcasing portraits of inspiring women from Leeds and beyond. Kat Archibald studied graphic design and illustration at Leeds Metropolitan University and now works as a freelance illustrator….

World Blood Donor Day 2019 by Lauren Smith

When I think about giving blood I always think about that voiceover from the TV advert saying “Do something amazing – give blood”. I always thought people like my Dad who gave blood were heroes! But now I donate, I don’t feel like a hero. Every time I attend I get a thank you from…

Misphonia

Have you ever been told that you eat too loud, or chew with your mouth open, or breath too loud? If you haven`t then I tell you that it is quite uncomfortable, especially if you like eating nuts like I do. After being told off for being a noisy eater by my wife I started…

National Biscuits Day!

It seems every day is National Something-or-other Day… but when I saw this day was coming up (just weeks after National Tea Day) I knew I wanted to write about it. One of the things people often say when they start working at Touchstone is that their clothes seem to be fitting quite snugly with…

More than a badge by Arfan Hanif

Colleagues may have noticed in our offices signage stating ‘Working to become Dementia Friendly’. Something seen across a number of organisations and businesses including on emergency service vehicles.  So what does it mean? Does it mean that staff in all organisations/employers who say they are ‘Working to become Dementia Friendly’ are competent to sensitively deal…

My real life insight into dementia (part 2) by Abigail Henry

Hi. I’m back with (I’m sure) the highly anticipated part B of my musings about dementia. As promised below is a transcript of my interview with a person living with a parent with dementia. I hope you enjoy the read and even better if it changes the way you might view those with and those…

Foster Care Fortnight 2019 by Leota Benjamin

My name is Leota Benjamin and I have worked for Touchstone for several years. My current role is a Mental Health Outreach Worker with The Community Support Team. In addition, I work as an approved Foster Carer, employed by Leeds City Council Children Services for more than 10 years. Being a Foster Carer is a…

My real life insight into dementia (part 1) by Abigail Henry

I’m a cognitive behavioural therapist who joined the IAPT team at Touchstone this month and this is my first ever blog. I’ve chosen dementia as my first topic, quite simply because I was asked! 🙂 Dementia is a term I understand but is not something which I’ve ever fully considered. I guess the way life…

Arts, Music and Dementia by Sarbjit Kaur

On the 13/14th April, Sikhs all around the world celebrate Vaisakhi and a procession called ‘Nagar Kirtan’ led by five Khalsa proceeds through public spaces. Vaisakhi marks the inauguration of the Khalsa, the body of committed Sikhs who have decided to dedicate their lives to the values of the Sikh Gurus. The Khalsa meaning “pure sovereign”…

The Nickel Silver Cutlery set with the Numbers on by Ralph Berry

There’s a set of cutlery from 1950, with the embossed numbers hammered in. It represents my fathers RAF National Service, over 2 years spent as a 20 year old young man straight from College, like his tools he made at English Electric in Thornbury after National Service that as an Apprentice, or the Morris Dancing…

A Vision for Dementia at Touchstone by Alison Lowe

Touchstone is proud of the contribution we make to the city-wide Leeds Dementia Strategy. There are an estimated 8,500 people living with dementia in Leeds, of whom just over 6,400 have a diagnosis.  Since 2013, the number of people with a dementia diagnosis in the city has increased by 40%. Touchstone, along with other charities,…