Ordinary Magic: resilience building through belonging – 27 March 2019 – Brighton Resilience Forum

Ordinary Magic: resilience building through belonging – 27 March 2019 – Brighton Resilience Forum

Topic:  Ordinary Magic: resilience building through belonging and mastery – Tim Holtham and members of Brighton Table Tennis Club.

Resources:  You can download the forum slides and watch a summary video of the forum presentation. You can also watch the short film ‘Believe That‘. The film follows the journey of Team Santos, three players from Brighton Table Tennis Club, as they prepare to represent their country at the European Down’s Syndrome Championships.

Session Summary:  With important insight into resilience building, Tim and Co will talk about the vision and practice of Brighton Table Tennis Club. With targeted sessions for looked after children, refugees including unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, people with learning disabilities and others, this is truly a ‘club for everyone’ but it is so much more than this. Members are encouraged to take responsibility and have ownership of the club, through being involved in decision making and by being supported to develop their table tennis, sense of belonging, relationship and leadership skills, with many members qualifying as coaches. Our own Boingboing member and Arts Connect Ambassador, Harry Fairchild, has worked with the club to become the world’s first qualified table tennis coach with Downs Syndrome. Many other members are benefiting from the club’s ethos of inclusivity and promoting a real sense of belonging.

Tim will talk about his introduction to thinking about the club’s activities through a resilience and ‘changing the odds’ lens and how he came to realise the value of what the club does in promoting the ‘ordinary magic’ that is resilience, for some of the people with the biggest odds stacked against them. He will outline his vision for the club having a more explicit focus on resilience in the future, and what we can all learn from the importance of mastery and belonging. This forum promises to be inspiring, different and most of all, fun.

Biography:  Tim Holtham is formerly a top-10 England Table Tennis Junior. He founded Brighton Table Tennis Club (BTTC) with Harry McCarney, in February 2007 with two worn-out tables in the Brighton Youth Centre and the strong belief that table tennis can be used as a powerful tool in engaging people of all ages and transforming lives.

Today the club has its own centre with 10 tables in Kemptown and runs 100 tables across the city in parks, squares, schools, sheltered housing schemes, a centre for homeless people, sports centres and a psychiatric hospital. It works in two prisons outside the city.

More than 1,250 people play in the club’s weekly sessions. Their number includes people with learning disabilities, young people from the Brighton Travellers site, Looked After Children, people with physical disabilities, people from the LGBT community and young asylum seekers. The youngest player is 2. The oldest is 98. The club is the world’s first recognised Club of Sanctuary, for its work with refugees.

Who might be most interested:  Academics, practitioners, researchers, students, parents, carers, community workers, volunteers, public sector workers, young people, service users and people with lived experience of mental health problems.

Further Reading:  You can read more about Brighton Table Tennis Club here (external link).

This event took place on Wednesday 27 March 2019.

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Previous Resilience Forums

Previous Resilience Forums

You can find information about our previous Resilience Forums in Brighton, Blackpool, Hastings and online here. Many of our previous Resilience Forums and Centre meetings have slides you can download, blogs you can read, or short films you can watch.

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