The history of the London ACEs Hub (LAH) is a journey of connections and learnings.
Simon Partridge, a survivor, writer and activist, was familiar with the ACEs approach and, as a result of the film Resilience, became interested in taking community action forward. At the beginning of 2018 at a seminar on sexual abuse, he met again Dr Felicity de Zulueta, a psychiatrist committed to unveiling and understanding the roots of trauma. They were both speakers at the event and, over a post-seminar coffee, they discovered a mutual interest in “framing” trauma issues in ACEs terms and disseminating ACEs awareness in London.
This was given momentum by the upcoming conference “Making Scotland the World’s First ACE-Aware Nation” in Glasgow in September 2018. Via the resourceful ACEs Connection (presently PACEs Connection), Simon saw a post by Tiane Graziottin about the event. He contacted her and they met near her canal boat in East London. They identified a shared enthusiasm about the Glasgow success and the desire to facilitate a similar movement in London.
Simon organised a coffee with Felicity and Tiane, which led to further stimulating meetings, joined also by Roger Grimshaw, a colleague of Felicity’s working in criminal justice. These conversations ignited the birth of the network that later became the London ACEs Hub.
As the initial invitation letter puts it:
A primary aim is to establish a broader Organising Committee to take the Greater London ACES Conference project forward. At the same time, we hope to set up an embryonic London ACEs Info Hub to gather information about the extensive ACEs activity in London, both community and professionally based, across many sectors – and to help people contact each other and share experiences.
The first scoping meeting took place in February 2019 at Body & Soul and had fourteen participants. It was chaired by Simon and Tiane and hosted by Rebecca Brennan. The subsequent monthly gatherings happened at the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies and were hosted by Roger Grimshaw.
The group has strengthened and evolved to create a shared identity and respond to changing contexts. Our purpose and aims have expanded to reflect collective experiences and goals. The infographic below, developed during the network initial year, presents the wide scope of the group's shared vision and purpose:
Infographic designed by Simon Partridge and Martin Pirongs.
An initial pan-London ACEs conference was planned for March 2020 in association with Confer. The event has been postponed to September 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. You will find the latest updates and registration information here.
What brings the LAH community together is the passion to promote awareness of ACEs and the traumas that they often cause and the commitment to building individual and collective resilience to create a compassionate, caring and fairer Greater London.
Nice to see you here sharing part of this journey.
Tiane and Simon and Simon and Felicity during their second meeting to address the birth of an ACE-focused network in London, November 2018.