Dr Nina Burrowes is a psychologist and researcher specialising in the psychology of sexual abuse. She works closely with the Crown Prosecution Service and Police forces throughout the UK providing specialist training on sexual abuse. She is the author of ‘The courage to be me’ an illustrated book for survivors of abuse, ‘Eyes open to sexual abuse. What every parent needs to know’ and the creator of the online video series ‘Sexual abuse. The questions you’ve never had the chance to ask’.
Nathalie Gordon is an award-winning Advertising Creative Copywriter. She specialises in Brand problem solving and developing distinct tone of voice for a large portfolio of clients.
Having recently left M&C Saatchi where she worked with Peroni, NatWest, Virgin and TFL she now works for digital agency, Rehabstudio, working almost exclusively with Google.
Abigail Bergstrom is Commissioning Editor at global publishing house, Simon & Schuster. She specialises in publishing contemporary non-fiction and looks for brave, controversial and exciting new voices.
Recent and upcoming publications include Everyday Sexism by award-winning feminist writer, Laura Bates; The Woman I Wanted To Be by Diane Von Furstenberg; an illustrated lifestyle book by Garance Doré; and None of the Above, a succinct and intelligent look at UK politics by TV presenter, Rick Edwards.
Nathalie and Abigail are 2 of the 4 founding members of the compelling campaign #thisdoesntmeanyes, which has seen coverage across radio, press and print in 23 countries worldwide. Working alongside the largest rape crisis centre in London, the campaign seeks to dispel the myths around what constitutes as sexual consent by empowering women of all ages, races and sexual orientation through photography and film.
Nathalie and Abigail will be speaking on the Arts and Activism panel on Thursday 30th July.
Winnie M Li is a writer and producer, who has worked in the creative industries on three continents. As Head of Development at Ugly Duckling Films, she worked on six feature films and an Oscar-nominated short, and later programmed for the Doha Tribeca Film Festival. She writes across a variety of formats, often about rape, and will soon begin her PhD at the London School of Economics on an ESRC grant, researching the impact of digital media on the public discourse about rape.
For Clear Lines Spoken Word Night, Winnie will be reading the opening of her upcoming novel, Dark Chapter, which is partly inspired by her own assault and was Highly Commended by the Crime Writers’ Association for their Debut Dagger Award. She will also be on the panel on ‘How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and abuse?’ on Friday evening and her play ‘Everything’s Normal’ will be performed on Friday night’s Theatre Night at Clear Lines.
Kayo Chingonyi was born in Zambia in 1987, moving to the UK in 1993. He holds a BA in English Literature from The University of Sheffield and an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway, University of London and works as a writer, events producer, and creative writing tutor.
His poems have been published in a range of magazines and anthologies including Poetry Review, Magma, Wasafiri, The Best British Poetry 2011 and 2013 (Salt Publishing, 2011 and 2013), The Salt Book of Younger Poets (Salt Publishing, 2011), Out Of Bounds (Bloodaxe, 2012), The World Record (Bloodaxe, 2012), and in a debut pamphlet entitled Some Bright Elegance (Salt Publishing, 2012).
Kayo has also been invited to read from his work at venues and events across the UK and internationally. In 2012 he represented Zambia at Poetry Parnassus, a festival of world poets staged by The Southbank Centre as part of the London 2012 Festival. He was recently awarded the Geoffrey Dearmer Prize and shortlisted for the inaugural Brunel University African Poetry Prize.
Kayo teaches in the Writing School at Kingston University and in the Drama, Dance, and Speech Department at City Lit. As a creative writing tutor Kayo has devised and delivered workshops for The National Theatre, London School of Economics, Royal Shakespeare Company, YMCA, Poetry Society, English Pen, Half Moon Young People’s Theatre, Pop Up CIC and Apples and Snakes as well countless universities, schools, youth centres and writer’s groups across the UK and internationally. As well as poetry, Kayo leads workshops in collaborative practice, theatre, life writing, fiction, song writing and performance.
As an events producer Kayo has curated events for Hackney Council, The Freeword Centre, Bernie Grant Arts Centre, Africa Centre, and Comic Relief. As an undergraduate he was co-founder of Word Life, a succesful literary and music event series based in South Yorkshire. In 2013 he co-founded The Blend a monthly arts night featuring the best in comedy, poetry, and music.
Kayo will be performing at our Spoken Word Night on Sunday 2nd of August.
Erin Kelly read English at Warwick University and has worked as a freelance journalist for over ten years. She has written for publications including Psychologies, Red and Mail on Sunday YOU magazine. Her first novel, The Poison Tree, was selected for Richard & Judy’s Summer Book Club 2011. A two-part dramatisation of The Poison Tree aired on ITV in December 2012. Erin’s second novel, The Sick Rose, was published to great acclaim in 2011, and was followed in January 2013 by The Burning Air. The Ties That Bind is her fourth novel. Erin has also recently published a novelisation of the immensely successful ITV crime drama Broadchurch, BROADCHURCH – The Official Novel, with Chris Chibnall. Erin lives in North London with her husband and young daughters.
Praise for The Ties That Bind
‘An elegantly plotted, convincing and beautifully written thriller’ Sunday Mirror
‘Full of well-drawn characters and heart-stopping moments’ Sunday Express
Erin will join our Sexual Violence in Popular Crime Fiction Panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Nathalie runs the not-for-profit organisation On Road, which tackles social problems by improving media coverage of misrepresented groups and issues. The On Road team brings people together, runs events and interactions, and works with clients and communities to design projects that bring about real social change. Their most ground-breaking piece of work is All About Trans, an innovative project that brings transgender people together with media professionals to encourage better understanding and representation in the media. This project has led to BBC Two’s ‘Boy Meets Girl’, the UK’s first comedy sitcom, with a trans character at its heart.
With a background in radio production at the BBC, Nathalie joined Media for Development in 2003 to set up the Prison Radio Outreach Project (PROP) and train the prisoner production team at HMP Wandsworth in London before becoming a fellow at The School for Social Entrepreneurs to set up On Road in 2005.
On Road are currently looking at ways to improve the media’s coverage of sexual abuse in partnership with Dr Nina Burrowes. As a Clear Lines sponsor, they have organised an expert media panel of journalists on Friday 31st of July 2015 at 6pm to tackle this issue. The panel asks: ‘How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and abuse?’ and will discuss why certain stories make the news and why others don’t, and whether we can change the way media professionals understand and portray sexual assault and abuse in the media.
Johanna is an Essex based photographer, originally born in Stirling, Scotland. Educated at the University of Westminster and Kent Institute of Art and Design in Rochester, she participated in group exhibition Fresh Faced and Wild Eyed 2014 at London’s Photographer’s Gallery. She was shortlisted for the Vienna Photobook Festival and exhibited at Brighton Photo Fringe in conjunction with the Hemera Collective, both in 2014. She has delivered gallery talks as well as educational talks to photography students. She is represented by L A Noble Gallery, London.
Her work explores relationships; between humans and nature, as well as those between people. She uses photography as a story telling medium in much the same way as a novelist would, often weaving multiple narratives into a unified whole. By employing allegory and symbolic association she subtly examines both large-scale and personal subjects, a process that links what, at first sight, appears to be disparate, but is in fact intimately connected.
Her role at Clear Lines Festival
During the Clear Lines Festival, artist-in-residence Johanna Ward will invite visitors to take part in a portrait studio that will encourage participants to make an emotional engagement with the subject of sexual violence.
Johanna will present three elements from her ongoing photographic work, entitled The Fear. This title provides the framework for a long-term project that will culminate as a collection of short stories that bear reference to the horror/thriller genre. Through the use of imagined scenarios and documentary images, she will explore the darker side of the complex relationship between women and men.
Poet, Literary Events Curator, Facilitator. Rachel was shortlisted for Young Poet Laureate for London 2014. She is a current poetry awardee on the prestigious Jerwood/Arvon Mentorship Scheme (2015-16). Her poems have been published in numerous anthologies and magazines, including Magma and The Emma Press. She has facilitated writing workshops for Apples & Snakes, Crisis at Christmas, and The Red Cross.
Rachel has helped realise events such as National Poetry Day Live at The Southbank Centre (2014) and Renaissance One’s, London is The Place For Me Festival – celebrating Caribbean literature. Earlier this year, she curated ‘Seven Songs for Malcolm X’, a film and poetry event at Deptford Cinema, and the UNHEARD Festival spoken word/poetry night, raising awareness about sexual abuse and violence. She is currently curating an ekphrasis event for Late at Tate.
For Clear Lines, Rachel will lead a free creative writing workshop for the public, encouraging attendees to explore themes of sexual abuse and assault through writing poetry and prose. She is also curating the Spoken Word Night on August 2nd, which will close the festival.
Chris experiments with a wide range of activities. He operates by himself, or with his family, with children or with adults – and these things almost always take place Outdoors. He doesn’t really work as part of any organisation, has no fixed way of earning a living or any concept of a career… so titles are awkward. Some call him a ‘bushcraft instructor’, some a ‘songwriter’… even a ‘rapper’, some a ‘blogger’ or ‘cartoonist’, some a ‘mentor’ or a ‘group facilitator’ – but he doesn’t.
One title that is technically correct is “Man”. Being one these, and allowing himself to be conscious of what is going on in the culture he is part of, perhaps explains why he’s involved in this festival. But he was one of 3.5 billion valid candidates. Here’s his website.
At Clear Lines Festival, Chris will be joining White Ribbon’s James Chespy, Alex Feis-Bryce from National Ugly Mugs Scheme and Dr Nina Burrowes at the “Where Have All the Good Men Gone” panel discussion on Saturday 1st August.
Tessa Hart is an actress, director and producer as well as the Artistic Director of The Bread & Roses Theatre and Goblin Baby Theatre Co. She holds an MFA in Acting (International) from East 15 Acting School and a BA in Theatre Studies from the Free University of Berlin. She has completed further performing arts work and studies in Bali, London, Berlin, Brussels and Moscow and is fluent, as well as having worked, in English, German and French.
As an actress Tessa has appeared in theatre, independent feature films, short films, TV- series and various other screen projects. As a director and producer she has worked across fringe theatre venues in London; having most recently produced the UNHEARD Festival (exlporing themes around sexual abuse and violence through performance) and directed a new adaptation of Miss Julie as well as a benefit production of The Vagina Monologues and a variety of short plays.
For the Theatre Night on Friday 31st of July at Clear Lines, Tessa will be co-curating a selection of short plays and monologues from the sold-out 2015 edition of the UNHEARD Festival, and directing two of them.
James Chespy is an ambassador for the White Ribbon Campaign.
White Ribbon Campaign is men speaking out about male violence against women, and challenging negative gender stereotypes which underpin abuse.
More than 25,000 have taken the white ribbon pledge never to commit, excuse or remain silent about violence against women, and 150 Ambassadors across the country help to spread the message.
James will be speaking alongside Chris Packe, Alex Feis-Bryce and Dr Nina Burrowes at the Where Have All the Good Men Gone? session on Saturday 1st of August.
Alex is the Director of Services of the National Ugly Mugs Scheme (NUM). Prior to his current role, Alex worked as a senior researcher and adviser in the House of Commons for six years. Following on from a National Ugly Mugs development project, he was appointed by UK Network of Sex Work Projects to oversee the set-up and development of the NUM pilot – he has been running the scheme ever since. Alex was runner-up as “Inspiring Individual” at the National Personal Safety Awards 2014 and “Influencer” in the DSC Social Change Awards 2014.
He is also a postgraduate research student at Northumbria University researching the policing of prostitution and is a board member of Manchester Action on Street Health (MASH) and Survivors Manchester.
Prior his work with NUM, he worked as a political adviser in the House of Commons for seven years and has run a number of successful general election campaigns. He has also worked as a consultant for third sector organisations supporting them in raising awareness about key issues amongst parliamentarians and government ministers and campaigning to influence legislation. He is a published writer and has been a campaigner for equality for all of his adult life.
Pavan Amara started My Body Back Project in August 2014. She is also a writer focusing on sexual violence, and a student nurse who works in the NHS.
My Body Back Project supports women who have experienced rape or sexual assault to love and care for their bodies again. They do this by running specialist services, including a cervical screening clinic designed especially for women who have experienced sexual violence, and an STI self-testing clinic for women who have been raped.
Both of these clinics work very sensitively with women, so they feel safe, relaxed, and their individual needs are met. They also run Café V, which is a quarterly session for women to learn about loving their bodies after violence.
The project is essentially about women reclaiming power over their lives, their bodies and their choices.
Pavan will be speaking alongside Ione Wells and Dr Nina Burrowes at “Finding pleasure after pain. Sex and intimacy after sexual violence” on Sunday 2nd of August.
Radhika Sanghani is a women’s writer for The Telegraph’s Wonder Women section, writing mainly about women’s political, health and lifestyle issues. She is also the author of millennial comedy ‘Virgin’, which is being published in more than 13 countries worldwide, and the sequel ‘Not That Easy’.
Sanghani will be speaking alongside, BBC Scotland’s Marcus Ryder, Dr Nina Burrowes and Winnie M Li at the panel on “How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and consent?” on Friday 31st of July.
Sarah Lightman is an artist, writer and curator. She is a co-curator of “Graphic Details: Confessional Comics by Jewish Women” and PhD researcher at the University of Glasgow. She is a co-founder and co-director of Laydeez do Comics. Find out more about her publications, lectures and artwork.
Sarah Lightman will join the Laydeez Do Comics panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Nicola Streeten has worked as a freelance illustrator since 1996. She began developing the comics aspect of her style in 2007 and in 2011 Myriad Editions published her first graphic novel, ‘Billy, Me & You’, available from Amazon or as an e-book from Sequential. She is currently working towards the publication of her second graphic novel and accepting illustration commissions.
Nicola Streeten will join the Laydeez Do Comics panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Michael May has been a team member at Survivors UK since 2008. His portfolio includes fundraising, financial management, marketing, branding, awareness raising and influence at local and national government. Prior to joining Survivors UK, he was a lawyer, marketeer, publicist, events guru and literary agent. None of which prepared him for the charity world!
Michael May will be speaking on ‘Do real men get raped?’ panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Ela Xora is an emerging British visual and performance artist whose art explores the biology of Sex, Gender Equality, and Greco Roman Mythology. Ela Xora appeared on the front cover of the Independent On Sunday for her 2014 exhibition The Silver Bo(X), which was also featured in The Evening Standard, The Mail On Sunday, The Huffington Post and the BBC. In her campaign to recognise Intersex and Transgender human rights in law, Ela Xora is due to premiere her most politically challenging exhibition to date. This will feature Epic Beat Poetry narrated by Game of Thrones actors Lena Headey and Natalia Tena, set against a new collection of paintings and pure 999 Silver Masks.
For Clear Lines, Ela Xora will exhibit “The Rape of Caenis” for the first time, the next painting in her exploration of Ovid’s poetic anthology Metamorphoses. “The Rape of Caenis” examines the common thread between female rape and the subsequent de-feminisation of some rape victims, as in the case of Ovid’s protagonist Caenis, who asked to be transformed into the male warrior Caeneus.
Ela Xora will be taking part in the Visual Artist Q & A on Saturday 1st of August.
Allie Costa is an actress, singer, writer, and director. Her original screenplays and stage plays include Femme Noir (Naked Expedition Project, New York City; GLO, Los Angeles), Who She Could Have Been (Black Rabbit Theatre, Canada; LBDI Semi-Finalist), and Can You Keep a Secret? (Bread & Roses Theatre, London; PlayGround-LA, Los Angeles) Her one-woman piece Glitter and Smoke was recently performed in London at Hackney Attic and Camden People’s Theatre and in Glasgow with Makeshift Broadcast. As an actress, her theatre credits include Spring Awakening, Anything Goes, and Hamlet, and her film/TV credits include 90210, Unusual Suspects, and You Me & Her. She’s currently playing Annie in the world premiere of Alien vs. Musical in Hollywood.
At Clear Lines, Allie’s play ‘Two Girls’ will be performed at our Theatre Night on Friday 31st of July.
Rebecca Robinson is currently studying an MA degree in Advanced Theatre Practice at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She has devised work with theatre company Sub-Sublime, which was presented at Camden People’s Theatre in the Sprint Festival. She is primarily a playwright and performer, but has also studied acting at Rose Bruford College. Last year she was shortlisted, among twenty-five writers, for the Theatre503 Playwrights Award and she is an alumni of the Royal Court Writers Programme. Her work has been performed in London at The Tricycle, Horse and Stables Theatre, The Bugaloo, Bridewell Theatre, Take Courage Theatre and a monologue from her first play was performed as part of the opening of the Bread and Roses Theatre, where it went on to premier as a full-length reading. Her work has also toured to other major cities in the UK, including Bristol, Manchester and Lincoln.
At Clear Lines, extracts from her play ‘Doe’ will be performed on our Theatre Night, on Friday 31st of July.
Tiff Stevenson is a stand-up comedian, actor and writer. She is soon to be seen as a regular in the critically acclaimed TV series ‘People Just Do Nothing’ (BBC3) and on the forthcoming series ‘Russell Howard’s Stand Up Central’. She also runs and hosts Old Rope, a weekly new material night which plays to capacity crowds every Monday night in London, with household names often dropping by each week.
Alongside her stand out appearances on ‘Mock The Week’ & ‘Drunk History’. Her other TV credits include ‘The Apprentice: You’re Fired’ (BBC Two), ‘Russell Howard’s Good News’ (BBC Two), ‘Never Mind The Buzzcocks’ (BBC Two), ‘Hey Ho Let’s Go’ (RTE), ‘Absolute Power’ (BBC Two), ‘Balls of Steel’ (Channel 4), ‘Only Joking’ (Sky), ‘Celebrity Deal Or No Deal’ (Channel 4), ‘Live With Gabby’ (Five), ‘Show Me The Funny’ (ITV) and ‘The Office’ (BBC Two).
Tiff regularly hosts the Comedy Club (BBC Radio 4 Extra), other Radio credits include Front Row (BBC Radio 4), 7 Day Saturday & Sunday with Al Murray (BBC Radio 5 Live) and The Good, The Bad and the Unexpected (BBC Radio Scotland). In August 2015, she will head to the Edinburgh Festival once more for her 6th solo show, ‘Mad Man’.
For Clear Lines, Tiff will be curating Saturday’s Stand-up Comedy Night – a line-up of stellar comedians guaranteed to challenge your thoughts on rape culture and gender.
Kate Rhodes was born in London. She has taught English at universities in Britain and the United States, and now writes full-time. Kate is the author of two collections of poetry, Reversal and The Alice Trap. She has been awarded English Speaking Union and Hawthornden Fellowships for poetry, and won the Ruth Rendell Prize in 2014. Kate has also been shortlisted for a number of other prestigious prizes, including the Bridport and Forward Prizes.
‘Alice is a vividly realised protagonist whose complex and harrowing history rivals the central crime storyline’ Sophie Hannah, Sunday Express
Kate will speak alongside MJ McGrath and Erin Kelly on our Sexual Violence in Popular Crime Fiction Panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Ione Wells is a writer and English Literature student at Oxford University. After writing a piece entitled ‘A Letter to my Assaulter’, Ione launched the Not Guilty campaign (#NotGuilty) against sexual violence and misdirected victim blame, that aimed to give a voice to victims of sexual assault. As well as using the campaign’s website to share stories and voices of other survivors, Ione is now working on providing consent workshops in schools and running writing workshops with the My Body Back campaign.
Ione will be speaking alongside Pavan Amara and Dr Nina Burrowes at the Finding pleasure after pain. Sex and intimacy after sexual violence panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Denmark born, Sweden raised by Somali parents, Ayaan is the founder of the Street Art Agency, Proprietor of Affordably Affordable Street Art Boutique and organiser of Femme Fierce – the world’s largest all female Graffiti Street Art Festival – dedicated to celebrate the women that create art in studios, brighten up high street shop shutters, scale roof tops and enter abandoned buildings to add colour to the drab walls that make up our cityscape for the love of the covert and secretive world of street art and graffiti.
On International Women’s Day this year, Femme Fierce supported Plan UK’s “Because I am a Girl” campaign by taking over London’s Leake Street tunnel. This initiative helped raise money and awareness for Plan UK’s girls’ right projects, aiming to help end violence against girls, including Female Genital Mutilation and child marriage.
Ayaan will be speaking on the Arts and Activism panel on Thursday 30th of July.
Pragna Patel is a founding member of the Southall Black Sisters and Women Against Fundamentalism. She worked as a co-ordinator and senior case worker for SBS from 1982 to 1993 when she left to train and practice as a solicitor. In 2009 she returned to SBS as its Director. She has been centrally involved in some of SBS’ most important cases and campaigns around domestic violence, immigration and religious fundamentalism. She has also written extensively on race, gender and religion.
Pragna will be speaking on the Arts and Activism panel on Thursday 30th of July.
Marcus Ryder is the Head of Current Affairs BBC Scotland. He executive produces all of the television current affairs output produced by Scotland Current Affairs for BBC Scotland and BBC Network. He has commissioned and executive produced several current affairs programmes on sexual assault including a programme on teenage rape, the time bar in Scotland on sexual assault cases (meaning some cases couldn’t be prosecuted) and an award-winning film on child sex abuse in the Catholic church in Scotland.
Marcus will be chairing the How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and abuse? panel on Friday night, 31st July at 6pm, alongside The Telegraph’s Radhika Saghani and Dr Nina Burrowes.
Ian Feis-Bryce was the first male specialist Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA) in the UK. ISVAs have existed formally since 2006 supporting victims of sexual violence report incidents to the police, advocate for their needs throughout investigation, and to support them when attending court. Whereas men have been able to access some ISVA services in the UK, they are often an ‘add on’ to a service designed to support women. Working for Survivors Manchester Ian successfully piloted the first male specialist ISVA service designed to support the needs of men.
Ian currently works for Together for Mental Wellbeing as a Forensic Mental Health Practitioner in London courts as part of the national Liaison and Diversion pilot scheme. In this role Ian is also piloting an LGBT championship to provide specialist training and support to other mental health practitioners regarding the needs of LGBT clients in the criminal justice system.
Ian is working and studying towards becoming a chartered Forensic Psychologist and in September will embark on a Forensic Psychology MSc.
Ian will be speaking on ‘Do real men get raped?’ panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
A former member of The Barbican Young Poets, Emily Harrison performs regularly in London and across the UK both as a member of The Burn After Reading Collective and as a solo performer. She has been Bang Said The Gun’s Poet in Residence and performed at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club. She has also been published in Popshot, Rising and was one of eight poets to have their work on the theme of London showcased at Boxpark, Shoreditch. She is currently working on her next collection, confronting a search for love against the stark, yet humanising backdrop of the psychiatric institution.
Emily will be performing at the Spoken Word Night on Sunday 2nd August.
Maria Stoian was born in Romania, raised in Canada, and now lives in Edinburgh. She has a BDes from the Alberta College of Art and Design and a MA in Illustration from the Edinburgh College of Art. She now works as a graphic designer and a freelance illustrator. “Take it as a compliment” is her first book. In her free time she likes to cycle and pretend she’s not allergic to cats.
Maria will join Laydeez do Comics and other artists for the Storytelling Sexual Abuse Through Comics panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Katie Green is an author, illustrator and comics artist. Her graphic memoir, Lighter Than My Shadow, began as a degree project and was published by Jonathan Cape in 2013. The finished work, some 500 pages, took almost 5 years to complete. It chronicles her descent into – and recovery from – eating disorders and sexual abuse. Katie has spoken around the UK and internationally about her work and her experiences. She works as a freelance illustrator and self-publishes a long running zine called The Green Bean. Praise for Lighter Than My Shadow:
“Even at its most heartbreaking it never feels sombre … Inspiring, plucky and, in the end, consoling, it’s hard to put down.” (Rachel Cooke, Observer)
Katie will join Laydeez do Comics and other artists for the Storytelling Sexual Abuse Through Comics panel on Sunday 2nd of August.
Sarah Kendall shot to fame in her native Australia after winning the Raw Comedy competition in 1998, and has enjoyed a flourishing career in the UK. She’s toured internationally and performed at the Hong Kong Fringe, Melbourne International Comedy Festival, the Adelaide Fringe, Edinburgh Fringe, Just for Laughs in Montreal and many more. Sarah has been nominated for a host of awards, including the Perrier. Her TV credits include Russell Howard’s Good News (BBC 3) Beehive (E4/Channel 4) and Edinburgh and Beyond (Paramount). She has also been a panellist on Radio Four’s Dilemma, The Now Show, News Quiz and Best Behaviour.
In 2014 Sarah spoke out about how she was threatened with sexual violence by a heckler at a show, and how she based a routine around it but “betrayed the seriousness of the incident”. Her work is fresh, funny, and guaranteed to make you laugh and think.
“A charming, vivid and absorbing storyteller” – Chortle (2015)
“This copper-haired comic’s show… certainly has plenty of laughs, but also a more serious subtext about the agony of adolescence.” – (Standard, 2015)
Here’s her Video: Edinburgh and Beyond.
Sarah will join Tiff Stevenson at our Comedy Night on Saturday 1st of August.
Belinda Zhawi is a 24 year old writer and educator born in Zimbabwe; a decade long resident of London. Most of her work focuses on her memories of living in rural and urban Zimbabwe whilst exploring the role this has played in shaping the narrative of her life thus far. She’s also interested in exploring how art and education can be used as intersectional tools. Belinda has performed across the UK in numerous venues, festivals and events including Africa Writes, TATE Britain, Bestival, Big Chill, Soho Theatre, Barbican, Book Slam and Poejazzi. Some of her work was published in the 2012 anthology Liminal Animals. Belinda is an active member of two writing communities: Burn After Reading and New Funk Poets. In May 2013 she featured on Channel 4’s Random Acts. As of October 2013, Belinda’s been enrolled on the MA Writer/ Teacher program at Goldsmiths College, University of London. She co-runs the monthly poetry night born::free fridays.
Belinda will be performing at our Spoken Word Night on Sunday 2nd of August.
Amaal Said is a 19 year-old Danish-born Somali who currently resides in London, UK. She is a poet, photographer and a politics student at SOAS. She is a member of the Barbican Young Poets and Burn After Reading collectives. Her work explores the idea of home, identity and what war has meant for her family.
Amaal will be performing at our Spoken Word Night on Sunday 2nd of August.
Sejal Chad is an HCPC-registered Integrative Arts Psychotherapist with over ten years experience in the mental health and community support field. She specialises in working with individuals and groups who have experienced complex trauma and abuse. Incorporating a background in creative writing, improvisation and conflict mediation with more traditional talking therapies, she supports people in articulating and understanding their struggles and experiences, and finding their own ways towards healing and moving forward.
Sejal will be leading the Creativity, Vulnerability and Resilience: Arts Therapy Workshop on Saturday 1st of August from 10:30 – 12:15pm.
Victoria-Anne Bulley is a writer, poet and MA student based in London. She is a member of The Burn After Reading collective and Barbican Young Poets collectives, and has been commissioned to write and perform at a range of London locations including the Southbank Centre and the Royal Academy of Arts. Her work is an exploration of cultural origins, the limitations of knowledge and the body, and a continual search for wholeness.
Victoria will be performing at our Spoken Word Night on Sunday 2nd of August.
Silke is a survivor of sexual abuse, therapist and social activist. She has founded the activism project SURVIVORS TOGETHER to spark a movement of survivors of childhood sexual abuse to speak for themselves, challenge stereotypes and stigmatisation and to educate the public. The group runs a monthly Open Forum for survivors at the Canvas Cafe in East London and is currently working on research-based information packages for education and healthcare professionals.
Silke aims to bring together the knowledge and expertise from within the survivors’ community, personal experience, scientific study and professional work to improve the perception and treatment of survivors in society.
She will be speaking on the ‘What do we tell the kids about sexual abuse panel?’ on Saturday 1st of August.
Josie is a three-time Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee, the star of Radio Four’s All Of The Planet’s Wonders and Short Cuts, and a regular contributor to The Guardian Guide. She’s recently appeared on BBC1’s Have I Got News For You, Channel Four’s 8 Out Of 10 Cats, Comedy Central’s Alternative Comedy Experience, Radio 4’s Just A Minute and many more. Her latest show ‘Cara Josephine’ was the overall best-reviewed comedy show at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014.
‘An original and unflagging spirit, oozing enthusiasm and intellect…Long builds delightful comedy worlds’
**** The Times
‘An absolute delight’
**** Time Out
Josie will be performing at our Comedy Night on Saturday 1st of August.
Alison Holt is an award-winning correspondent for the BBC’s main national TV and radio news programmes, and for the BBC’s flagship current affairs programme, Panorama. She is the Royal Television Society Specialist journalist of 2015 and winner of the Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain’s Social Evils, 2015. Specialist areas include child protection, social care, the welfare system and mental health. She has covered many major stories for the BBC at home and abroad.
Alison will join the How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and abuse? panel on Friday night, 31st July at 6pm, alongside The Telegraph’s Radhika Saghani, BBC Scotland’s Head of Current Affairs Marcus Ryder and Dr Nina Burrowes.
Helen Sweeney is the Hestia Domestic Abuse Service Manager in Westminster. She has extensive experience working directly with victims of abuse and managing different types of services for them such as refuges, IDVA, floating support and peer to peer support. She has been a lecturer of Psychology and Statistics at university level and is qualified social worker.
Helen will join the panel ‘Why doesn’t she just leave? Barriers faced when leaving an abusive relationship’ on Thursday 30th of July from 4:30pm – 5:30pm.
Mouna El Ogbani is an Independent Domestic Violence Advisor. Mouna started working with domestic abuse victims at Al-Hasaniya as a Domestic Violence Outreach Worker in 2004. Since this time, she has rapidly progressed in her personal and professional development and in 2013 successfully completed the CAADA IDVA qualification. Specialising in her field of working with BME communities, Mouna is now the lead VAWG staff member within Al-Hasaniya’s services and has recently taken up the role of the Independent Domestic Violence Advocate working with 9 agencies across the tri-borough area (RBKC, Hammersmith & Fulham and Westminster) as part of the newly formed Angelou Partnership.
Mouna will join the panel ‘Why doesn’t she just leave? Barriers faced when leaving an abusive relationship’ on Thursday 30th of July from 4:30pm – 5:30pm.
Halla Gunnarsdóttir is Senior Advisor at McAllister Olivarius, one of the few law firms that specialise in online harassment and revenge pornography. Previously, Halla served as the Political Advisor to the Minister of the Interior of Iceland, where she was responsible for policy making and implementation in the field of justice and human rights. A long time campaigner against all forms of sexual violence, Halla developed and led a widespread awareness-raising campaign about sexual violence against children in Iceland. She has worked with various grass roots organizations, and in efforts to improve international cooperation in this area.
Halla will be speaking on the ‘Creating clear lines on harassment and revenge pornography’ panel on Friday 31st of July at 4:30pm.
Georgina Calvert-Lee is Senior Counsel at McAllister Olivarius and previously the chief litigator at AO Advocates, a sister firm that represents survivors of child sexual abuse. Through her work focusing on employment and discrimination law, Georgina has seen the taboo surrounding harassment and the reasons why it is still prevalent and frequently overlooked or dismissed by both the target and those responsible. She understands the legal avenues open to employees or others who have experienced harassment, as well as the harmful effects on organisations where it is still pervasive.
Her extensive experience has been accumulated from previous positions at the international law firm Coudert Brothers and Sonnenscheim, Nath and Rosenthal, and from representing women at all levels of organisations (banks, companies, universities, law firms and schools) over the past two decades. Georgina has appeared on the BBC and ITV and been quoted in major newspapers on both sides of the Atlantic discussing her work at McAllister Olivarius and AO Advocates.
Georgina will be speaking on the ‘Creating clear lines on harassment and revenge pornography’ panel on Friday 31st of July at 4:30pm.
Pamela Zaballa, Head of Women and Children’s Services at Hestia. Pamela started working with domestic abuse victims in Manhattan Family Court as IDVA case manager. In the UK, she held several roles as services manager and senior manager for a national provider of domestic abuse services. At Hestia, Pamela has had the opportunity to develop multiple new services as Group Manager for Women’s Services. Currently, she is the Policy Head of Women and Children services. Pamela was a Trustee for Central American Women’s Network for over three years and holds an MA in Poverty, Conflict and Post-Conflict Reconstruction from The University of Manchester.
Pamela will speak on the panel ‘Why doesn’t she just leave? Barriers faced when leaving an abusive relationship’ on Thursday 30th of July from 4:30pm – 5:30pm.
Peter Kelley is Coordinator of the LGBT Domestic Abuse Partnership. Peter has worked at Galop for over eight years after 10 years of working in research and education. He was a case worker for LGBT survivors of DVA and hate crime for four years before becoming coordinator for the LGBT DAP – a pan-London partnership providing help and advice for survivors of domestic violence. Peter is also Service Manager for Galop, the LGBT anti-violence charity.
Peter will join the panel ‘Why doesn’t she just leave? Barriers faced when leaving an abusive relationship’ on Thursday 30th of July from 4:30pm – 5:30pm.
A brand new show to launch multi-award winning Bridget’s literary debut A Book for Her (and for him, if he can read). Bridget Christie is a multi-award winning British comedian, writer and actor. Come and enjoy 50 minutes of new material followed by a 10 minute book signing.
‘Astonishingly complex and uproariously funny’ Guardian
’Pretty much flawless ★★★★★‘ Telegraph
’Astonishing ★★★★★‘ Chortle
’A brilliantly constructed show ★★★★★‘ Arts Desk
★★★★★ Big Issue
★★★★★ Sunday Times
‘Fantastically funny ★★★★‘ Guardian
‘Laser focussed and brilliantly sustained ★★★★★‘ Independent
In 2013, Bridget Christie won the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award for Best Show with her show A BIC FOR HER. The show also won the 2014 South Bank Sky Arts Award for Best Comedy, the 2014 Chortle Award for Best Show and a 2014 Hospital 100 Club Award for Performance and Theatre.
A BIC FOR HER was a total sell out in Edinburgh and became the top selling comedy show at Soho Theatre ever, selling out every night of its 54 night run.
Her debut BBC Radio 4 series, BRIDGET CHRISTIE MINDS THE GAP was broadcast in April 2013. It won Best Radio at the 2014 Chortle Awards and a prestigious 2014 Rose D’Or International Broadcasting Award. It was also nominated for a Radio Academy Award 2014, but she lost out and was told by the winner on the night that she shouldn’t have won anyway, as it was only her first series. Her second series was broadcast in January 2015 and and also won a 2015 Chortle Award for Best Radio. Her 2014 tour, a double bill of A Bic for Her and An Ungrateful Woman, won the 2015 Chortle Award for Best Tour.
She was also nominated for a 2014 British Comedy Award for Best Female TV comic for her one performance on television in 2014, Have I Got News For You.
Bridget also writes for The Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times, The Independent and various publications when she has time.
She has appeared in several TV and radio comedy shows, including BBC One’s The Omid Djalili Show, E4‘s Cardinal Burns, Harry Hill’s Little Cracker (Sky), Anna and Katy (Channel Four), It’s Kevin (BBC2), Have I Got News For You (BBC One), The Culture Show(BBC Two), The Alternative Comedy Experience (Comedy Central), Series 1 and 2, Mel & Sue (ITV) and Celebrity Squares (ITV). She doesn’t really like doing telly though and tries to avoid it.
BBC Radio 4 shows include The Broadcasting House Programme, Andy Zaltzman’s History of the Third Millennium, The News Quiz, Miranda Hart’s House Party, It’s Your Round, Sarah Millican’s Support Group (Series 2), Loose Ends, The Fred MacAulay Show, Dan Tetsell’s The 21st Century for Time Travellers, The Now Show, Heresy, Kerry’s List, It’s Not What You Know, The Unbelievable Truth, Dilemma and French and Saunders’ Christmas Show. She has also presented Radio 4 Extra’s Comedy Club.
She has written and performed 9 critically acclaimed consecutive solo Edinburgh Festival shows, The Cheese Roll, The Court of King Charles II, The Court of King Charles II – The Second, My Daily Mail Hell, A Ant, Housewife Surrealist, War Donkey, ABic for Her and An Ungrateful Woman.
Natasha Japanwala is a writer from Karachi, Pakistan. She is the managing editor of Side B, a magazine that champions work by underrepresented voices, and that recently published a series of essays by women who had been sexually assaulted. She graduated from Princeton University in 2014 with a degree in English literature and creative writing and was a 2015 recipient of a Martin Dale Fellowship. She now lives in London.
Natasha will be running the Memoir Writing Workshop on Sunday from 11am – 1pm.
Red Chidgey is Lecturer in Gender and Media at King’s College London. Her current research examines techniques of creativity and risk in online anti-rape activism.
She is also spearheading a digital archive dedicated to the global protest movement SlutWalk. SlutWalks mobilize around the call to end ‘rape culture’ and institutional patterns of victim-blaming. Over two hundred SlutWalks have taken place internationally in over forty countries, from Canada to South Africa, from Brazil to Poland. The Slutwalk archive will be available on www.grassrootsfeminism.net.
Red will be chairing the Arts and Activism Panel on Thursday 30th of July.
Described as a comic-philosopher, Stuart Black’s social commentary is truthful, poetic, and eloquent. His style and intelligence set him apart as a truly original and independent voice in comedy. A “fascinating character seemingly straight out of a Kerouac novel”, Stuart has performed around the world including shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Stuart will be performing at our Comedy Night on Saturday 1st of August.
Detective Chief Inspector Jane Scotchbrook joined the Metropolitan Police Service in February 1988 having first trained and worked as a bilingual secretary. She began her detective training in 1994, working at Croydon Police Station, before taking promotion and moving to Charing Cross in 2001 as a Detective Sergeant. She was instrumental in forming one of the Met’s first dedicated sexual offence investigation units, situated in Westminster, and ran one of the teams there. Once promoted to the rank of Detective Inspector her posts have included Staff Officer to the Met’s Crime Commander; working within the Directorate of Professional Standards (internal investigations) primarily investigating deaths following police contact; investigating the death of Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed.
As Detective Chief Inspector she headed London’s south east sexual offence investigation teams between 2010 and 2012 before leading the Command’s Partnership, Cold Case and Intelligence teams. In the summer of 2013, the sexual offences investigation teams joined with the child abuse teams and DCI Scotchbrook now leads the Partnership Team with responsibility for both sides of the command. She works jointly with the NHS to improve services to rape victims and third sector agencies to break down barriers to reporting. She also oversees Project Azure, the Met’s response to FGM and their continued efforts to raise awareness and improve investigative opportunities to eradicate this form of child abuse.
Jane will be speaking on the Sexual assault: The questions you’ve never had the chance to ask panel on Saturday at 4.30pm.
Baljit Ubhey OBE joined London in October 2013 from Thames and Chiltern CPS, where she was CCP. She has 21 years of experience in the CPS and has presided over high profile cases including the conviction last year of seven men who were part of a child sexual exploitation grooming gang in Oxford. Also in 2013 she oversaw the first ever ‘cash for crash’ prosecution, and is the national hate crime champion within the CPS.
Baljit began her CPS career as a Legal Trainee in November 1992 before progressing to a Senior Crown Prosecutor in CPS London in 1994. Three years later in 1997 she took up an Advisor role in CPS Policy Directorate representing the service both nationally and internationally on changes in legislation and advice to the Law Officers, Director of Public Prosecutions and Home Office.
During her tenure with Policy Directorate, Baljit also undertook the role of Diversity Manager, developing our race equality strategy and setting up the Equality and Diversity Unit. In May 2004 Baljit was appointed CCP for Thames Valley, later becoming CCP for Thames and Chiltern in 2011.
Baljit will be speaking on the Sexual assault: the questions you’ve never had the chance to ask on Saturday at 4.3pm.