When I first did the ProSocial Facilitator training in 2019, I didn’t know where or how to apply the principles. I remember feeling small compared to some of the other ProSocial projects that my peers on the training were involved in. Fortunately, the words (I think from Paul Atkins) saying “wherever you can reach,” lingered in my awareness. I have followed these words, applying ProSocial to my paid work as a Consultant Clinical Neuropsychologist with adults with acquired brain injury and also in my unpaid work where I live, helping community sustainability and thriving.
I will present two concrete examples to show exactly how ProSocial was applied in these contexts, so that it may help others to see just some of the endless possibilities:
www.inspireothers.org.uk: a website that developed in my REM sleep when I was stuck with a client. Using a ProSocial process, a small team of 5 co-created a website with clients sharing their stories to inspire other people with neurological conditions. The website has now had more than 12,000 views worldwide and is used a therapeutic and teaching tool by therapists. The clients involved have a shared sense of purpose and contribution to the world and lives of others.
Purley Sustainability Group: a community not for profit group started in 2020 with 8 initial members who answered my invite in a local Facebook group. Three years later we have a ProSocial governance structure with a core committee of 16 members and several subgroups, ProSocial relationships with a community café, local government, local schools, Scouts and so much more. We have created community events such as a monthly Repair Café and a community meal, catalysing connection and purpose. We were thrilled to win Community Group of the Year 2022 for our district.
About the speaker
Richard lives on the River Thames watershed in Purley on Thames and works in Independent Practice at Coates Neuropsychrehab Ltd.
Hearing about Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) on a Christmas NHS Neuropsychology walk along the River Thames and 8 years later training in ACT when starting Independent Practice, transformed his work. Following values of connection, creativity and learning with psychological flexibility (mindfully moving towards these values whilst being aware of difficult thoughts and feelings that will show up) has led him on an ongoing, evolving journey, bringing ProSocial and Regenerative Practice into his work.
Richard loves spending time with people in person, via Zoom and seeing people and relationships thrive. He sees his purpose in life as a ‘connector.’