Training Seminars 

LRG Training Smallest

Every church community has people who have been affected directly or indirectly by alcohol or drug misuse, compulsive behaviours and or mental health problems.

Some of these are in the public arena, others are carried by sufferers in secret for years.

Understanding these behaviours and knowing how to help are challenges we all face.

Jesus said he was sent “to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free” Luke 4:18.

Life Recovery Group aims to support people on their journey to wholeness and freedom, and to support the church supporting people on this journey.

About The Training Sessions

Our training, now in its fourth year, aims to equip churches and pastoral care workers to better understand and support people struggling with addiction and the issues they are facing on their recovery journey.

It is best experienced as a whole course, but can also be booked as standalone sessions. They all run from 9.30am to 12.30pm, with coffee being served from 9.15am.

We ask for a voluntary donation of £5 per session which will go towards the work of Life Recovery Group.

Here's some information about each of the six sessions:

Addiction and the Brain - 29 September 2018
Dr. Fegus Law, Consultant Psychiatrist

Dr Fergus Law has worked in the addiction field for 24 years, initially as a researcher with Prof David Nutt and then as Clinical Lead in Bristol and South Glos and more lately in Wiltshire. He believes that addiction and addictive attitudes are issues that affect us all personally, and can disrupt our relationships with those we care about and with God. He has a particular clinical and research interest in the use of medications, psychological interventions and alternative treatments in therapy for addiction clients, and in particular those using alcohol, benzodiazepines and opiates.

He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and lectures widely in the addiction field for a number of national organisations and universities, and has contributed to expert groups and the development of several treatment guidelines on addiction treatment. He has written several research papers and reviews, but is perhaps best known for his work in the addiction field on the development of care pathways, protocols, and procedures, as well as self-help materials to empower clients - most notably the Samurai Approach to detoxification from opiates.

Relapse and Recovery - 10 November 2018
Ant Newman, Recovery Navigator

Originally from Southampton, Ant started his recovery career as a housing officer & drugs worker at the YMCA in 2002. He went onto work in a variety of job roles a local charity called Society of St James in 2007, including needle exchanges & rehab programmes, as a Drugs & Alcohol worker and Care Co-ordinator. From 2010-2014 he ran Saints4Sport: a recovery project collaborating with local football clubs in sports, education and employment.

Since moving to Bristol in 2014 he has volunteered with Life Recovery Group and worked as a Recovery Navigator for Bristol Mental Health services. Ant currently works for Joseph Studios, a design and carpentry studio which runs an occupational and creative program for volunteers in recovery. Ant is also a Lifeskills trainer for Crisis Centre Ministries and a Love Bristol community house leader. Having had his own brushes with addiction and mental health he is an ever learning pupil of his own recovery.

Trauma & Attachment - 12 January 2019
Fr. Giles Lascelle, Psychotherapist

Giles is a UKCP accredited psychotherapist who specialises in working with adult survivors of trauma and childhood abuse. He previously worked for many years as in the NHS as a psychotherapist, trainer and team facilitator in the NHS. He has also worked with Social Services, a number of charities working with mental health and addiction, and in private practice. In more recent years he has also been involved in Christian ministry.

He is the leader of Breakthrough, a Christian Charity that works with survivors of trauma, and which equips and trains people in churches and other ministries to provide effective support and pastoral care to survivors of trauma and others with complex emotional and spiritual needs. He is married to Ally and lives in Bath.

Mental Health - 16 March 2019
PJ Charters, BABCP Therapist

PJ has worked in a variety of settings with those with severe mental health problems: as a team member and Ward Manager for a number of inner city acute mental health admission wards. As a Community Psychiatric Nurse and Care Co-ordinator and then for over 10 years as a Cognitive and Behavioural Therapist working as part of an early onset psychosis service in inner city London. He is an accredited BABCP CBT therapist and supervisor, and a volunteer therapist and supervisor with Network Counselling.

He’s passionate about working with those who experience mental health problems providing excellence in psychological care whilst offering a clearly biblical and practical response to caring.

The 12 Steps & Mutual Aid Groups - 11 May 2019
Lydia Davenport, Drug & Alcohol counsellor

Lydia is a trained addictions counsellor and has worked in the substance misuse field for around 8 years. Having worked in a variety of settings (residential rehab, hostels and supported housing), Lydia is now a team manager at a drug and alcohol agency. Lydia is passionate about using evidence and research to inform good practice and finding ways to train and equip local churches to serve people with addictions.

Having worked in a 12 step rehab and trained in delivering 12 step based treatment, Lydia is particularly interested in how the Church interacts with the 12 step philosophy and passionate about myth busting misconceptions about 12 step meetings and philosophy.

From Homelessness to Independent Living - 6 July 2019

Richard Sayer, Salvation Army Hostel Manager

Richard is the Service Manager for Salvation Army Lifehouse (homeless hostel) Logos House in Bristol. Prior to this he worked for the National Probation Service as a manager with the Youth Offending Team, and with adult offenders in groupwork and one-to-one.

Richard has Honours degrees in Social Anthropology and Community Justice. His hobbies include cycling, reading and playing the guitar. He is a Trustee for a Charity called Changing Tunes which uses music to help rehabilitate prisoners and ex-prisoners. He is married with two sons, and attends Woodies Church.


The training sessions will all be held at The Old Schools Rooms, St Michaells Centre, The Green, Stoke Gifford, Bristol, BS34 8PD. 

There is free on street parking and you can find more information here.

How To Book

If you would like to book any of the sessions, please click here to leave us a few details and let us know you're coming. We look forward to welcoming you along on the day.

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