Hey Matt and Stephanie.  I just wanted to say thanks to you both for the Reawaken Conference that I was lucky enough to get a brief taste of last week.  Coming along last Thursday even for just a snippet of the week was just so uplifting and inspiring for me in myself and thinking about my practice.  I sensed that the week certainly threw out its difficulties for you both as organisers so also just wanted to affirm you both as amazing, genuine and values laden people and practitioners who both give me inspiration to keep doing what I'm doing knowing such wonderful colleagues are in the journey alongside. Richard

Thankyou!! Matt, Steph, Oryx, PJ, David, Ross, Claire, Kane and everyone.


Thankyou for a truly uplifting, generative and meaningful conference…


You have all worked super hard (+ I have some idea of what goes into an event like this and it’s a huge task.. ) and throughout the week you have all been so warm and welcoming and centred (I get this may not be how you have always felt!)


Your presentations were dynamite.


So many highlights – the Projects, the panels, meeting you all, great! Workshops and Maggie Toko’s  “Just shut the fuck up” 😊


No negatives from me… Im sure shit happened, and stuff went wrong behind the scenes… but we were blissfully unaware (as you are when an event is so well curated and run).


Thanks again



(Inside Out and Associates)


Beautiful, peaceful, healing venue

no pressure in anyway


Fabulous food for my allergy (coeliac)


Fun, support, acceptance






Free choices at what you want to participate in 

Loved the art room

Loved the content and processes

made me think a lot at community connections

new theoretical stuff was valuable


felt safe which i never really feel at conferences


happy with everything and thank you to the organisers


Thankyou. Its been such a privilege to be a part of this conference. Its been enlightening, educating and fun. A varied smorgasborg of topics. A wealth of wisdom from people from all walks of life. A real joy to be a part of it all. Time restraints have meant that topics couldn’t be taken to a depth that could have been helpful – but at the same time there have been good opportunities for group activities.


Ive loved the freedom that the conference has offered choices of topics in the various workshops. Ive loved being able to stay peer all week


Very inspired now to bring it on tin Auckland!!


Loved all the ‘side’ ideas too – DSM IV etc. Great ‘connector’ activities


Good luck with all your future projects and thanks for having me!


Kind regards Sue van Rossum

Connect Supporting Recovery

Auckland NZ xxxx



Feeling grateful to have enjoyed open minds convening together to redefine and recreate our relationship and approach to mental “illness” at the ReAwaken Conference today and this evening.


It is high time indeed for a systemic overhaul in current practise that “manages” mental health through the narrow lens of labels and diagnostic tools, shifting towards an understanding of the person and their experience within a broader societal and cultural framework. The power imbalance that is both necessitated and perpetuated by these limited constructs is so insulting to a person’s lived experience and authorship of their own life.


Being a clinician, a therapist, a healer etc etc, no matter how many years of university study, can never take precedence over living from the inside of an individual’s experience.


What is deemed psychotic and ill in our mainstream context is perceived as a cracking open of a connection to a higher source in most indigenous cultures, and given the spiritual guidance that is needed to unveil a gift that is then shared with community.


It’s not locked up and heavily medicated and suppressed, it’s not shrouded in a fear that makes it scream louder. It’s time to press rewind.