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Dr Naomi Masheti, Programme Coordinator with Cork Migrant Centre, will facilitate the next Heart of Frontline Practice’s reflective practice workshop on Tuesday 15th November at Northridge Education & Training Centre in Mahon, Cork.

The theme of the workshop is ‘Inclusive Practice: Breaking the silence around race and mental health’.

Originally from Kenya, Dr Masheti has been living in Cork since 2001. Before joining the Centre, she attended UCC where she completed her PhD in 2015 specialising in the Psychosocial Wellbeing of Sub-Saharan African Migrant Children.

Dr Masheti and her team’s work at Cork Migrant Centre encompasses psychosocial work, with an emphasis on supporting the pre-integration of migrant people and mental health prevention in Direct Provision Centres. This involves capacity building (emotional, physical, cognitive, knowledge, skills, social and cultural) with mums and babies and children ranging from toddlers to teenagers who come to the Centre at Nano Nagle Place for activities, support and workshops.

“We provide a safe space at Nano Nagle Place so that people can come and be supported in a holistic way,” said Dr Masheti. “For example, our initiatives include stress management workshops for people struggling with the quarantine aspect of Direct Provision.  We also run a parenting programme, ‘Culturally Relevant Parenting Programme’ which we adapted from Australian to Irish settings and have tailored it for migrant parents. We have trained ten people living in Direct Provision Centres to date to deliver this programme to other parents – and the work is on-going.

“In close collaboration with other institutions, we use art, music and dance to build capacity and to create opportunities for healing and self-confidence, but also for visibility of the ethnic minority population in Cork and awareness raising of the importance of equity, equality, diversity and inclusivity.”

Dr Masheti will be inviting practitioners at our two-and-a-half-hour workshop to reflect on what equity and inclusive practice means to them and the positive impact it can have on others.

“We will explore power dynamics and equity through discussion, role play and games. My hope is that attendees will engage with this topic in a reflective and honest way, and take time out of their routine daily practice to consider how the small, everyday things we do really matter. We will acknowledge conscious and unconscious bias and consider what we can all do to take a more inclusive approach in our work. We all mean well but the consequences of something said or done can cause friction or have a profound impact on an individual’s wellbeing and mental health,“ said Dr Masheti.

Dr Masheti will be joined by Fionnula O’ Connell, Youth Coordinator with Cork Migrant Centre, who will share her lived experiences as a practitioner living in Cork. She is also a founding member of the CMC Youth Initiative Against racism, working to support young people through coordinating activities, capacity building and mentoring.

This in-person, continuing professional development workshop is open to all frontline practitioners in education, healthcare, social care, social work and justice. The intention is to create a supportive space where we can come together as committed practitioners to connect, share and learn and to deepen our understanding of what it means to be truly engaged in values-based, heartful practice.

The subsidised fee is €30 and bookings are now being taken via Eventbrite or email info@relationshipsinpractice.ie