Hackney Thinking Spaces

Hackney Thinking Spaces (HTS) is a 12 month joint community based project with us and I Found Me Therapeutic Counselling. It aims to create safe spaces for discussing and dealing with the emotional impact of systemic racism on residents’ mental health. This project is a direct response to recent events of systemic racism which have profoundly impacted upon Black and Global Majority children, young people and families in Hackney. The Thinking Spaces will help people talk about how discrimination in the past and racism today have created an urgent need for action.

HTS will bring together Black and Global Majority communities by providing therapy groups led by experienced therapists. These groups will help residents openly discuss and deal with the impact of racism on their mental health.


Creating change to the system

Throughout this project, there will be a specific focus on creating real change to the system. The Thinking Spaces will involve the development of community-based solutions to the systemic issues discussed. A Community Advisory Board (CAB) made up of Hackney Residents, chaired by Patrick Vernon OBE, will move these forward, steering this work and focusing on influencing system change in Hackney.

We’re working to change how people view fighting racism by highlighting the importance of mental health. This project shows our commitment to creating a community that’s inclusive, fair, and mentally healthy. We want to recognise, understand, and tackle the effects of systemic racism. City and Hackney Public Health funds the project. City and Hackney Place-based Partnership /Integrated Health Workstream for Children, Young People, Maternity and Health supports the project.

Hackney Thinking Spaces aims

Sign up to Hackney Thinking Spaces group sessions

I Found Me Therapeutic Counselling (IFM) will deliver the Hackney Thinking Spaces project.

I Found Me Counselling is a community-based therapy service. They have experience in designing and giving custom training and workshops in many settings. IFM Counselling has experience with many counselling services. They focus on providing support for the diverse needs of the communities they serve. I Found Me will deliver a schedule of Thinking Spaces groups over 12 months. They will meet the needs of specific groups from the Black and Global Majority Community.

We’re committed to supporting participants of all abilities to access the Hackney Thinking Spaces group sessions. We will endeavour to make reasonable adjustments if required. Contact I Found Me Therapeutic Counselling to discuss any additional support you may need to access the project.

The first group sessions start on Friday 12 April 2024.

To sign up to the sessions and for more information, visit I Found Me Therapeutic Counselling – Contact us.

Apply to join the Community Advisory Board (CAB)

As part of the HTS initiative, we want Hackney community residents from Black and Global Majority Communities to join the Community Advisory Board (CAB). The CAB will help residents take part in the decision-making processes. They will ensure that HTS reflects the needs, concerns, and hopes of Black and Global Majority residents.

Apply to join the Community Advisory Board

You must submit your application by 15 April 2024.

Alternatively, you can email hackneythinkingspacesCAB@hackney.gov.uk.

The Community Advisory Board (CAB) aims to achieve the following set of key objectives:

Evaluating the impact of Hackney Thinking Spaces

It’s essential for us to ensure that our work is meaningful. So, we will evaluate the impact of Hackney Thinking Spaces by doing regular evaluations. This will include:

  • How the Thinking Spaces deliver (including whether people find the sessions useful and why)
  • What were the outcomes of the initiative ?
    • What was different for participants and communities because of the sessions?
    • Were participants satisfied with the sessions?
  •  How responsive are public services to community-led solutions?

We will use the findings of the evaluation to understand the impact of the Hackney Thinking Spaces and how we can sustain the positive changes achieved through community-based solutions. 

We would appreciate it if you can complete our stakeholder survey as we embark on evaluation of the Thinking Spaces: 

Complete our stakeholder survey

We will use the findings of the evaluation to understand the impact of the Hackney Thinking Spaces and how we can sustain the positive changes achieved through community-based solutions.

Page updated on: 17 May 2024