Annushka Baker found This Way Up because she was looking for furniture.
"I’d seen a programme on tv about how to decorate your home for less, a kind of low income makeover. They said that some charities do furniture schemes for people on limited incomes. I thought why don’t I go see what’s round here as that’s me. I put ‘low income furniture’ into google and Homestore came up.
They were really well-organised, very friendly. I was really impressed. I got a beautiful wardrobe and was even able to give them a bit of furniture as well for someone else to use.
I'd never heard of This Way Up before but when I browsed the website I thought it sounded great.
I’ve got twenty years’ experience of working in mental health and then had an accident and couldn’t work anymore. Life-coaching was something I’d tried before so I found the idea of This Way Up really interesting. I registered then and there.
This Way Up was great. By the third session a light had gone on for me.
Because of not working for a while and having been stuck in the house and out of everything This Way Up was a way of reintroducing me to the world, a guide on how to start up again. It led me to want to begin again and start up a programme of my own. I’m trying to get a job and return to work now and looking for a place to fit in. I have a lot of life experience, and work experience in mental health which I don’t want to throw away. Tim first suggested I could set up something myself, as he did in getting This Way Up started. It was overwhelming to think of at first but now I’m working out how to do it.
The difference from anything else out there is the pairing of mindfulness with life-coaching.
They really should go hand in hand. The life coaching gives you the chance to work out what to concentrate on and work further on what you’ve deemed necessary through the mindfulness sessions.
This Way Up is really important because there’s a lack of control, and a constant battle to remain human when you are going through the system and having to apply for benefits, and everything else.
It’s a dehumanising process. This programme re-humanises people and lets them know they do have control, and can make a change, where before they thought they were powerless. It is really empowering. It works well for self-esteem – and self-esteem is really stripped from you in the system. "
Annushka Baker, This Way Up participant