Trauma survivors are the driving force of our organisation.
As survivors, we have an unparalleled understanding
of what trauma is and how it can be transformed. It is
our inner perspectives, combined with our expertise in art and science, that allow us to change the ecosystem
of trauma from the inside out and create new horizons.
Yet, this is a movement that must include everyone
– for trauma concerns us all and we are all to benefit from the world we are building. Therefore, we are also intentional about working with non-survivors who share our vision and values.
Our core team members are all survivors,
our associates include survivors and their loved ones, and our advisors encompass a range of people with different experiences and interests in trauma.
Laura E. Fischer (she/they)
Founder & CEO
Laura trained with the Ballet de la Côte in Switzerland and studied arts at Central Saint Martins, mental health sciences at Queen Mary University, psychology at King’s College London, traumatic stress at the Justice Resource Institute, and she was awarded Improvement Leader Fellow by NIHR CLAHRC NWL. Her research focuses on the embodied experience of trauma and body-based interventions, her art practice explores the reclaiming of the sociocultural narrative of trauma on survivors' terms, and her consultancy includes trauma-sensitive practice and arts for health. She is Visiting Lecturer at UCL and QMUL; Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at KCL; and she serves on the ATTUNE Data Monitoring and Ethics Committee at the University of Oxford and the Editorial Advisory Board of The Lancet Psychiatry. She has worked with many communities, universities, NHS Trusts, the NIHR, Public Health England, Wellcome, and others. She has published, presented, and exhibited internationally, including at the V&A, Whitechapel Gallery, and BFI, and some of her artwork is in the Central Saint Martins Museum Collection.
Roz Etwaria (she/her)
Roz is the reputable driving force behind littlero.org and is an ambassador for Survivors Voices. Roz campaigns for the rights of victim-survivors of child sexual abuse. She has studied trauma through Black history, Feminism and Abuse. Roz has spoken to audiences worldwide on hope and healing. Roz is an award-winning, highly respected playful public speaker and thought-provoking social intellectual.
Sullivan Holderbach (he/they)
Art Manager & Researcher
Sullivan is a trauma survivor, artist, and researcher focused on the development and facilitation of survivor-led, arts-facilitated, healing practices. His research aims to utilize creative practices as means to encourage and sustain health by renegotiating personal relationships and understandings of trauma. He completed his BA degree in Drama and Theatre Arts at the University of Birmingham and his MASc degree in Creative Health at University College London. His practice is informed by his multi-nationality as well as his experiences working as a stagehand, performer, costume/set designer and stage manager in both the Festival of European Anglophone Theatrical Societies and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Julian Triandafyllou (he/they)
Julie-Yara Atz (she/they-elle/iel-هي)
Julie-Yara Atz is a Syrian-Swiss hybrid who studied filmmaking at the Geneva University of Arts and Design and acting at the Giles Foreman Centre for Acting in London. Her documentary “Leaving Syria: long live the youth” premiered at Telluride in 2017, and she was recently cast in BBC/ITV show “Shetland VI” as recurring character Salma Nassan. She is currently working on developing her first feature film “La Bâtardise” (Bastardy) – about a mixed Syrian-Swiss family in Switzerland – while finishing an MA in Cultural Studies at SOAS.
Julian’s work explores themes of time, memory, belief, and activity attempting to find avenues out of cyclical processes; the work often silently mirrors or reflects the experience of living with trauma. Creating across writing, photography, and hybrid-documentary the work invites the viewer to explore the power and agency formed through creative processes.
Isaac Ouro-Gnao (he/they)
Isaac Ouro-Gnao is a Togolese-British multidisciplinary artist and freelance journalist. He graduated from Canterbury Christ Church University with a Multimedia Journalism BA in 2015, and from Queen Mary University of London in Creative Arts and Mental Health MSc in 2022. His work is rooted in magical realism and Africanfuturism with a focus on themes of childhood, trauma, memory, and mental health across the forms of dance, theatre, film, essays, and poetry.
Gavin Edmonds (any pronoun)
Dr Gavin Edmonds is an artist / artist-researcher whose work looks at how and why artists identify with other artists / artwork, and what processes are at work when this occurs. This developed from his own experience with an artwork, that lead to the subsequent recognition of PTSD, dating back to childhood. His work employs/builds upon the Freudian concept of (afterwardsness), which describes how an experience that is either incomprehensible or traumatic, is retained unconsciously then revivified at a later time in a different context.
Alicia Jane Turner (they/them)
Alicia is an interdisciplinary sound artist whose work spans contemporary theatre, live art and new classical music, creating and collaborating on projects that are raw, provocative and political through an intersectional feminist, queer lens. Their work as a sound designer and composer in theatre has toured internationally and across the UK, and they have performed at venues including the Southbank Centre, Barbican, The Almeida, The Yard Theatre, Rich Mix and Battersea Arts Centre. They’ve been commissioned by organisations including the Philharmonia Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, National Sawdust (New York), Spitalfields Music and Rich Mix. They were a Bang on a Can composer fellow in 2018, and a London Sinfonietta Writing the Future composer for 2020-2022.
Allison Vicente (she/her)
Associate Artist & Practitioner
Allison is a Filipino-Canadian dance artist raised in Vancouver on the unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples, including the Musqueam (xʷməθkʷəy̓əm), Squamish (Skxwú7mesh), and Tsleil-Waututh (səl̓ilwətaɁɬ) nations. Through her choreographic pieces Allison has aimed to raise awareness on trauma, relationships, and complex family dynamics. Her evergrowing passion for psychology and movement has led her to London, UK, where she is completing her MA in Dance Movement Psychotherapy at the University of Roehampton.
Ami Vadgama (she/her)
Ami has been involved in a number of projects on the Public Mental Health programme run by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) School for Public Health Research. In addition to mental health research, she is also passionate about cardiovascular science and is currently mid-way through her PhD.
Angie Sweeney (she/her)
Angie is a trauma survivor, survivor researcher, Senior Lecturer in User-Led Research and Director of the Service User Research Enterprise (SURE), King’s College London. Angie has particular interests in gender-based violence, trauma and parenting, and trauma-informed approaches. Although a health services researcher, she originally studied social sciences, and sociological approaches continue to inform her work.
Bobbie Galvin (she/her)
Bobbie is a communication designer who specialises in creative strategy, information design and branding. Within these areas, her practice lends itself to ethnographic methods which give life to designs that first and foremost connect to people and the places they inhabit. She has a BA (Hons) in Graphic Communication Design from Central Saint Martins and has worked on projects with Survivors Voices, VAMHN, NIHR SPHR, align, the UAL Social Design Institute, Broadbase.
Claire Sunho Lee (she/her)
Claire is an interdisciplinary artist and researcher born in Seoul, Korea. She often thinks about the ways of “being” and how we exist in the world individually and collectively. Lee experiments with this idea through the concept of “control and surrender” in everyday life settings and suggests new perspectives to examine the familiar. Through the means of rules, logic, and algorithms, she examines psychological complications, human conditions, trauma, and more.
Associate Practitioner & Researcher
Concetta is a psychotherapist, consultant, and researcher. She has over 25 years of experience in supporting people, as a social worker with children in care and facilitator of peer groups for survivors of abuse and trauma, and more recently as a an integrative counsellor and psychotherapist. She is co-founder of Survivors’ Voices and led the research on the Charter for Engaging Abuse Survivors, which explores safe and effective engagement of survivors in research and services.
Esperence Mujer Guerrera
Esperence trained in Integrative Counselling Psychotherapy and is now a trainee in Dance Movement Psychotherapy. She also works as a Support Worker for the homeless charity St Mungo’s and has volunteered for Crisis for a decade. She has expertise in trauma, mental health, addiction, homelessness, and disability.
Gil Holderbach (he/him)
Gil is a French-American graphic designer and artworker.
Jane Chevous (she/her)
Jane is an abuse survivor and has championed participation and lived experience with over 40 years of work in youth work, social care, lifelong-learning and children's rights fields. A writer, educator, researcher and activist, she leads Survivors Voices, turning the pain of trauma into the power to change responses to abuse. She lives on their old sailing yacht with her husband Ivan, enjoys leading their 8 grandchildren astray, sewing and playing her accordion.
Julie Reed (she/her)
Julie is a writer and Professor of Improvement Science. Her inquiries focus on learning how improvements can be achieved in complex social systems. She has a special interest in understanding how academics, practitioners and members of public can collaborate, and how our worldviews and philosophical perspectives influence what we do and how we interact with each other. For over a decade Julie was the leader of a hybrid academic-NHS organisation which explored how to translate evidence into practice and achieve improvements in healthcare services. Whilst engaged with this work, which she was passionate about and deeply committed to, Julie experienced workplace trauma as the result of bullying, discrimination, and betrayal. This led Julie to embark on a personal journey to heal from complex PTSD and transformed her understanding of the role trauma plays in society. Julie is now the director of her own company, a visiting professor of improvement science and is writing a series of books that draw on her personal experiences.
Khadj Rouf (she/her)
Associate Researcher & Practitioner
Leila Sibai (she/they)
Leila is a legal researcher currently working as an independent legal investigator in collaboration with the Center for Justice and Accountability (CJA), with whom she supports the development of case-files pertaining to war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Syria. Leila has an MA in International Law and an MA in Research Architecture and is currently developing her own research practice. Leila is also a board member of Huquqyat.
Marian Crole (she/her)
Marian is an Anglo-Uruguayan-Swiss artist, educational trainer and ombudswoman dedicated to holding space for emotional release through her work. She is a caring soul sensitive to beauty and truth. She works with individuals and also institutions in different countries of Europe.
Neha Shah (she/her)
Associate Researcher & Practitioner
Neha is a Consultant In Public Health and a Psychodynamic Psychotherapist. She is both passionate about supporting people directly and advocating for societal change to better protect people from trauma and empower them to heal, grow and live fulfilling lives.
Rachel Milligan (she/her)
Rachel completed a Masters in Mental Health Science and a PhD in Biochemistry. She is interested in the neurobiological correlates of trauma and in better understanding our brains.
Síofra Peeren (she/her)
Síofra is a trauma survivor and researcher. Her work focuses on amplifying the voices of survivors to transform health and social care; a mission that is shaped by both her lived experience. She has expertise in trauma-informed approaches and gender-based violence, and in using trauma-informed, creative and novel methods to engage with expertise held by survivors. She is also passionate about embedding trauma-informed principles in the evidence that shapes practice and policy decisions and thus founded the Kindness in Research Conference - a conference about trauma-informed research.
Ying Li (she/her)
Ying is committed to a radical re-imagining of who we are and how we relate to each other and the more-than-human worlds, both visible and invisible. As an Inner Dimensions Guide with a background in healing therapies, Ying assists individuals and groups to connect with their inner knowing, intuitive perceptions, soul expression and elemental awareness. Core aspects of her work include meditation, ritual, dance alchemy and engagement with Earth consciousness.
Allison Vicente (she/her)
Andrea Danese (he/him)
Andrea is a clinical scientist interested in childhood trauma and trauma-related psychopathology across the life-course. He is Professor of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at King’s College London and Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at the National and Specialist CAMHS Trauma, Anxiety, and Depression Clinic at the Maudsley Hospital (UK).
Avinash Sharma (he/him)
Avinash is a Consultant Physician working privately and at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Trust. He supports people with a wide range of acute and long-term medical conditions. He works collaboratively in delivering comprehensive and person-centred holistic care to his patients, thereby improving their health outcomes and wellbeing.
Andrea Luka Zimmerman
Andrea is a Jarman Award winning filmmaker, cultural activist and artist whose engaged practice calls for a profound re-imagining of the relationship between people, place and ecology. Focusing on marginalised individuals, communities and experience, the practice employs imaginative hybridity and narrative re-framing, alongside reverie and a creative waywardness. Informed by suppressed histories, and alert to sources of radical hope, the work prioritises an enduring and equitable co-existence. Andrea grew up on a large council estate and left school at 16. Andrea is Professor of Possible film at Central Saint Martins.
Helen Fisher (she/her)
Helen is Professor of Developmental Psychopathology based at King's College London. Her research explores the role of social, biological, and wider environmental factors in the development, course, and prevention of mental health challenges in children and young people. She is also passionate about improving public awareness about mental health through collaborations with artists and young people who have lived experience.
Judah Armani (he/him)
Judah is a Designer in Residence at InnovationRCA, Head of Social Impact Lab in Service Design Masters Programme at The Royal College of Art, multi-award winning Collaborative Designer, and Founder of InHouse Records, a collaborative rehabilitative programme, operating in and outside of multiple UK and USA prisons.
Judy Willcocks (she/her)
Judy is Head of the Central Saint Martins Museum & Study Collection and a Senior Research Fellow with a specialism In object-based learning. Judy contributed to the Museums on Prescription research project and has a long standing track record in social prescribing and museum based wellbeing activities.
Kam Bhui (he/him)
Kam is Professor of Psychiatry & Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist at the University of Oxford. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the British Journal of Psychiatry and the Director of the World Psychiatric Association Collaborating Centre, among other roles. He is Principal Investigator of the ATTUNE Project, a multi-site study that explores young people’s experiences and understandings of mental health and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) using varied arts-based methods.
Karin Hagemann (she/her)
Karin is the Managing Director of Sustainable Outreach, a strategy consulting firm, previously a Director of PwC and then of KPMG in Geneva, Switzerland. Karin looks back on a long career in varied domains, from being a United Nations employee to managing a health foundation, to being an organic farmer, as well as many years in strategy consulting. International development and more recently the Sustainable Development Goals provide the red thread that has guided both Karin's personal and professional development.
Maria Grazia Turri (she/her)
Maria is a Senior Lecturer at Queen Mary University of London and the co-director of the MSc Creative Arts and Mental Health. She worked as psychiatrist and psychotherapist in the NHS for 15 years and is a member of the Critical Psychiatry Network. Maria advocates for radical reform of contemporary psychiatry, for the need to prioritise trauma prevention and social justice, and for harnessing the arts for research, education, advocacy and practice in mental health.
Michael Ghossainy (he/him)
Michael is a creative strategist and producer based in New York City; he specializes in brand identity and social initiatives. He has launched awareness campaigns with the International Rescue Committee and works on the local level with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as a career mentor. He has an affinity for collaborating with people to develop diverse, culturally-informed strategies that improve lives and evolve within the context of tomorrow.
Minh Dang (she/her)
Minh is an activist, artist, academic, and Co-Founder and Executive Director of Survivor Alliance, an international non-profit and non-governmental organization with a mission to unite and empower survivors of slavery and human trafficking. She is also a Research Fellow and Lead in Survivor Wellbeing and Scholarship at the University of Nottingham’s Rights Lab. Recently, Minh earned her Ph.D in Politics and Contemporary History, studying the wellbeing of survivors of slavery and human trafficking.
Sunita Sharma (she/her)
Sunita is an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist with over 20 years of clinical experience. She is the postnatal lead of the NHS London Maternity Clinical Network. Sunita is also an NHS England Clinical Entrepreneur and has led on multi-award winning ‘mum and baby app’ and ‘postnatal digital suite’ projects. More recent work has included the Beyond Birth Living Library, co-designed with local Maternity Voices Partnership, offering parents peer support tailored to their birth experiences.
We turned violence into insight
and insight into action.