Bravery and Belonging
George Bettany - believing that everybody can be themselves
Naomi Leake - Rebelling for Life
Emmanuel Unaji: Fine art and fashion rebellion
Lucy Sullivan - using comic artistry to tackle mental health
Thales: The Beautiful Struggle
Dave: Starting over with sobriety
Bravery and Belonging
Bravery and Belonging

We will be holding this event at The Signal Pub in Forest Hill on May 23rd at 7pm.

Get your ticket here FFast!

George Bettany - believing that everybody can be themselves
George Bettany - believing that everybody can be themselves

Sanctus exists to enable people to become their full selves. Started up by two best friends, James and George, armed with friendship, passion and authenticity in their hearts. The Sanctus movement began with James sharing his story in a blog post called Mental health in startups .

They tell their own story as honestly as they can through regular vlogs, as they believe it’s important for people to really be on this journey with them and for them to show that they are living their own values.

Their mission is to change the perception of mental health.

“We see a world where people view mental health like physical health and we want to put the world’s first mental health gym on the high street. We believe that to change the current perceptions around mental health; we must normalise conversations, remove the shame and get people excited about mental health — not scared of it. We must show that working on our mental health is about working to be our full selves.”

The movement creates safe spaces for people to talk about mental health. They do this online, in the community and within the workplace.

Their community talks openly about mental health, they share their our own stories and champion the Sanctus mission with pride. They do this by sharing great stories through social media, wearing Sanctus clothing and connecting with each other at Sanctus events.

In the workplace, they partner with businesses to create an open environment where mental health is supported and people can bring their full self to work. They do this through Sanctus Coaching and placing Sanctus Coaches in the workplace.

Sanctus are based in the Tea Building in Shoreditch. They run their community events there too, however they travel all over the country to provide Sanctus at work. Their mission is to become a global brand where they make mental health accessible across the world (not just in East London).

Find out more about the incredible work they are doing:

Naomi Leake - Rebelling for Life
Naomi Leake - Rebelling for Life

Naomi Leake is a writer and environmentalist. She is also a speaker for the fast growing Extinction Rebellion movement. A global environmental movement which believes we are facing an unprecedented global emergency. Our joint loss is huge. Half of all animals have ‘vanished’ in just one lifetime. We are in an Ecological crisis, a mass species extinction. Our course is set to planetary system collapse.

World leaders have failed to adequately confront the existential threats posed by climate and ecological breakdown, let alone the causes of the crises. Polite lobbying, marching, voting, consumer- and shareholder-activism, have all failed. We are now on the brink. If asking the establishment nicely doesn’t get them to act, then the only option left is civil disobedience, to disrupt the ordinary working of things, so that decision makers HAVE to take notice.

Extinction Rebellion are strictly and avowedly non-violent. But we can and will use our words and our bodies to disrupt the system that threatens us all.

The task ahead is daunting and the likelihood of success may seem slim, but the stakes are so high, the risks of continuing down the ruinous path we are on so dire, with all Life hanging in the balance, that doing nothing, even doing only what we’ve done before, is unthinkable.

We need to take action in the world and we need to look after ourselves and each other. This rebellion is fuelled by our love, which is growing because we are willing to face the grief of these times. A movement that is not afraid to tell the truth and then act on it.

Find out more at:

Emmanuel Unaji: Fine art and fashion rebellion
Emmanuel Unaji: Fine art and fashion rebellion

Emmanuel Unaji is a multimedia artist based in London. Combining painting, drawing, collage and fashion design, Unaji’s style is rebellious and bold. Alongside his brother Lemuel, Emmanuel has created the clothing label “UNAJI” which merges art into fashion. Emmanuel has studied fashion design and is currently pursuing a degree in Fine Art at Kingston University, London.

Popular culture and Christianity are central to Unaji's practice and the tension between what is viewed as morally “right” or “wrong” heavily influences his artistic process. Translating this into mixed media works, Unaji’s art frequently serves as oxymoron - 'Innocent Sin' is an example of a topic loaded with religious connotations that he uses as a starting point for his artistic process.

Inspired by the fashion industry, Unaji frequently takes fragments of magazine photographs to which he adds painted, drawn or sculpted elements. Blurring the boundaries between fine art and fashion design, he works under the clothing label “UNAJI” to combine mixed media works and other practices to create wearable art and accessories like printed denim jackets, which have caught the attention of international musicians.

Unaji’s work is principally an exploration of what lies beneath the surface. He critically examines our tendency to form opinions on the basis of media headlines and photographs, thereby critiquing the digital era we live in and the vast amount of information we are bombarded with on a daily basis.

The contrasting aspects of his characters, who frequently appear as images torn between beauty and high-fashion on the one hand and deep-suffering on the other, aim to give us a glimpse into complex personal realities.

“I want my work to develop into a fluid cycle of organic practices and collaborations, merging fine art, music and clothing and to expand the range of my artistic practice.”

Lucy Sullivan - using comic artistry to tackle mental health
Lucy Sullivan - using comic artistry to tackle mental health

Lucy Sullivan is an Artist, Author & Animator. Since graduating with a BA (Hons) in Illustration/Animation in 2005 from Kingston University she has Co-directed and animated music videos, created Pre-visuals & storyboards for Film & TV and taught Observational Drawing at a number of Universities.

After a maternity break Lucy found herself losing many work opportunities so in 2016 she followed a life-long ambition and moved into comics. Her recent works include her mini-comics ‘1in4 Zines’, part of the Welcome Library catalogue & ‘Atramental’, she has exhibited with ‘MindTheArt’ and contributed artwork to Heart Research UK’s AnonymousheART auction plus produced commissions for top US Comic publishers & UK Comics Festivals.

Lucy is passionate about breaking stigma around mental health and is an ambassador for the research based charity MQ. Her debut graphic novel BARKING, based on the her experience of a mental health crisis, is published by Unbound and supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England & by The Lakes International Comic Arts Festival.

'Barking' the graphic novel crowdfunding now at:

Thales: The Beautiful Struggle
Thales: The Beautiful Struggle

From Street Cyphers, and freestyle battles, to supporting Rag n Bone man on his European tour Catford Based Rapper thales brings an insight into the culture, challenges and rewards of following a dream, while addressing some of the deeper issues society currently faces and the complexity surrounding them.

Influenced by UK OGs such as London Posse, Skinny Man, Black Twang & Taskforce, as well as American rappers like Mos Def, Talib Kweli & Common to current artists such as giggs, wretch 32 and wiley. Thales fuses a mixture of boom bap, trap, grime and even some drill.

Writing since the age of 13 his love and art of the craft along with a determination to provide a voice for those who aren’t always heard has been his main driving force.

Honesty and the importance of telling his own story has always been the main focal point right up until his first official release on “Linkup TV” last year titled “Honestly” which saw him collaborate with German producer Ben Rushan & Nicki Minaj designer dead lotus couture.

His motivation comes from both the art of mastering the craft while making sure his music remains truthful and highlighting the challenges faced with juggling a dream and full time job.

We all have a story all living side by side entwined in this big mixing pot.

“Imagine driving though Lewisham and rolling down the window. That’s what I sound like, its a reflection of everything you see, hear and experience, the good, the bad, probably some things you agree and don’t agree on.”

Find out more at: @thalesthegreat

Dave: Starting over with sobriety
Dave: Starting over with sobriety

My name is Dave. I started drinking at the young age of 14 years old. Quite often I would go home, throw up and then get up in the morning and go to school with a hangover!

My drinking carried on and I became a regular at the local pub.

Moving on I developed the nickname “Gluggs”! Gluggs because I would drink at an incredible speed whilst in the pub. Almost like I couldn’t get enough.

My drinking carried on during my twenties, thirties and forties, costing me many friends and relationships along the way.

I moved into a cottage in my early forties and this became my ‘lock in’.

I no longer went to the pub. I became a reclusive drinker. I would stock up on a Friday with Vodka, wine and strong percentage lager, and appear Monday morning completely hungover and depressed. This carried on for 10 years
or so.

I started a relationship with my now wife Emma, and she had been diagnosed with cancer right at the beginning. Yes of course I stopped drinking! Nope I drank more!

Four years in to our relationship and regularly we argued, I would get even more pissed, and sleep on the sofa. Our relationship was in tatters.

Last year, I was scammed for nearly £10,000, and then my Mum became unwell, and subsequently died at the end of last year. Family stresses, money worries and business was terrible. This year my wife has been diagnosed for the 3rd time with breast cancer.

I decided enough was enough, even with all this diversity. I HAD to stop. No longer could I rely on the fake crutch of alcohol. My body, and mind had enough. My marriage had enough.

I want to share my 40 year relationship with booze. The good times, and the
very bad times.

Follow dave here: sober_dave_today