I was referred to the Hope Centre in September 2009 as part of a course of therapy for work-related stress and depression.

I enrolled on the Confidence Building Course because I was suffering from a lack of self-worth and self-esteem.

Over the next few weeks I learned a lot about the theory of depression, its causes, its triggers and strategies to cope. I began to understand how I’d arrived at my state of mental health. I could recognise the events and situations in my life that would trigger bouts of depression and anxiety. Lots of coping strategies were introduced and we discussed our own strategies within the group.

After several episodes of depression over a number of years, I believe my time at the Hope Centre has proved to be the most helpful therapy I’ve received.

The content of the course was very good and the delivery was excellent. The centre and the facilities provided are very conducive to the nature of the course – it’s quiet, informal, friendly, welcoming and relaxed. It conveys an atmosphere ideal for the reduction of stress and anxiety.

From my own experience, I believe that the BREATHE programme offered by the centre should be made available to more people in the community.


Update – September 2012

I always intended to do further courses and I did; well one anyway - Ambition. Whilst engaged with the Hope Centre, it was recognised by my tutor that I had a natural empathy with others and unbeknown to me had actually begun to support a few of my fellow students. It was suggested that I would possibly make a good support worker. I worked at Hope House for six months supporting people with issues surrounding homelessness. Unfortunately, some funding was withdrawn and my position became redundant. However, thanks to my previous training at the Hope Centre, I was able to cope with the loss of employment again and did not fall into depression.

I have suffered some personal trauma in the last few years but again, using all the knowledge I gained at the Hope Centre, I have managed to maintain my mental health and my outlook on life remains positive. I don’t ever see a time when I will return to the person prone to depression that I once was.


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