Category Archives: News

Hearing Voices Group Facilitation Training with Jacqui Dillon

Hearing Voices Network Ireland is pleased to announce an online Hearing Voices Group Facilitation & Network Development Training course, facilitated by Jacqui Dillon. It has been a while since training has been made available in Ireland and HVNI are particularly pleased to (virtually) welcome Jacqui back to Ireland. The course will consist of 3-hour weekly sessions over an 8-week period.

Expressions of interest are now invited from voice hearers and others active in the hearing voices movement in Ireland, who are in a position to set up and facilitate/co-facilitate a HV Support group (face to face or online), either independently or with the support from an organisation (either statutory or voluntary). This needs to be clearly demonstrated in the application. Joint applications are specifically welcomed.  

Limited number of Scholarships available (inquiries to

Places limited to 20 participants.

We warmly welcome applications from people who hear voices. Please note, that we would encourage people who have developed a working relationship with their voices to apply, as training and group facilitation can be demanding.

Places on the programme are limited to 20 and will be allocated on:

  1. the details provided in the application form
  2. the ability to attend all (or at least 7) sessions
  3. start/facilitate/co-facilitate a Hearing Voices group following completion of the course.


8 x 3-hour weekly online sessions from Tuesday 3 May – Tuesday 21 June 2022 from 14.00 – 17.00 IST/UTC+1


€200 Euro – Waged/Professional (payments by instalments possible)

€50 Euro Unwaged/Voice Hearer (payments by instalments possible)

Single application forms can be found here (hyperlink) and joint applications here (hyperlink). Application forms to be returned either by email to or by post to:

Harry Gijbels, 115 Atkins Hall, Lee Road, Cork T23 EA06

The closing date for applications is Friday 8 April 2022. 

If you would like to discuss making an application and/or would like more information about the programme, please contact Harry at or on 085 7554220.

Cycling in memory of Sandra & HVNI Raising Funds

Harry will be cycling across Europe to raise funds for HVNI in memory of Sandra Escher

Donate here:

Harry Gijbels, a Board member of the Hearing Voices Network Ireland, and active in the Hearing Voices Movement now for many years, started his annual long distance cycle a few days ago.

The journey takes him from Cherbourg in France to Marburg in Germany and then on to Rotterdam in the Netherlands, covering between 1500 and 2000 km. This year, he is, with permission from Marius Romme, dedicating the journey in honor of Sandra Escher, who died recently. Sandra has been called the ‘mother of the Hearing Voices Movement tribe’. Sandra, together with her partner, Marius Romme, developed many new ways in working with voice hearers, helping them and others to make sense of their voices.

Raising awareness and providing Hearing Voices training opportunities are important aspects of the work of Hearing Voices Network Ireland (HVNI). So, alongside this dedication, HVNI is keen to raise the necessary funds to develop promotional and educational materials, and to provide training opportunities. Our target is to raise €2000, in other words approx. €1 per km cycled by Harry. We hope that you can support this good cause! Harry will provide daily updates via his Facebook page, including the kilometers cycled!

More information on the HVNI Facebook page.

Hearing Voices Group Facilitators’ Online Support Group

At the recent HVNI AGM, it was highlighted that HV Group facilitators would benefit from having a space to meet on a regular basis. 

We are pleased to announce two online meeting spaces (if you cannot attend one of the slots, then hopefully you can attend the other one). The plan is to provide these spaces on a regular basis (every 6 weeks in the first instance).

The meeting will provide an open forum for HV Group Facilitators to discuss group facilitation matters. Members of the HVNI Board will be present at the meeting to start the process, with the idea to agree general principles of how this support group should function.

Although in the first instance this space is for Group Facilitators who facilitate a HV Group in Ireland, we welcome participation from Group Facilitators across the globe!

These are the dates and times for the first two Facilitator meetings:

Monday 31 May from 1.00 – 2.00 pm

Tuesday 1 June from 1.00 – 2.00 pm

The Zoom link for these meetings is

Any queries or suggestions, please contact us at

On behalf of HVNI

New Online Hearing Voices Group

A new online hearing voices support group has been launched for anyone who hears voices or any other unusual experiences. The group is only open to people with these experiences and is a safe and non-judgmental environment for people to discuss their experiences.

The group will meet on Sundays at 4pm beginning on the 9th of May.

If you have any questions email –

The group will meet on Zoom using this link:

Please feel free to share with anyone you think would be interested.

Event: ‘Fiction about Psychosis: Impact, Ethics, Effects’

Speakers: Jasper Gibson, author of The Octopus Man, and Jacqui Dillon.

About this event

An ISPS UK Webinar supported by Hearing the Voice, Durham University.

Fiction is at the heart of human culture. Now is a perfect moment to ask what we need from it, and our storytellers. – Nathan Filer, Asylum (winter 2020) p 11.

Jasper Gibson’s The Octopus Man is a novel about a man called Tom who hears the voice of the Octopus God, Malamock. It is a novel about surviving what gets called psychosis and surviving society’s response to it. It is a novel about sisters and friends, about psychiatric incarceration and medication, about tests of faith and lines of flight.

What challenges do writers and readers of fiction face when it comes to stories about madness?

Jacqui Dillon – activist, survivor and consultant on The Octopus Man – joins Jasper Gibson to discuss how this novel came into being and to explore some of the questions it poses around ethics and imagination, literary license and personal and political responsibilities.

Jacqui Dillon is an activist, writer and public speaker and has lectured and published worldwide on trauma, hearing voices, psychosis, dissociation and healing. Jacqui has co-edited 3 books has published numerous articles and papers and is on the editorial board of the journal Psychosis: Psychological, Social and Integrative Approaches. In 2017, Jacqui was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Psychology by the University of East London.

Jasper Gibson was born and bred in Parwich, Ashbourne, Derbyshire. He now lives in East Sussex and is the author of one previous novel, A Bright Moon for Fools. Jasper has been writing professionally for over twenty years for magazines, TV, and online. He is the co-founder of, and co-creator of the satirical chat show ‘Tonight… With Vladimir Putin’.

Their conversation will be introduced by Angela Woods, ISPS UK Trustee, Associate Professor of Medical Humanities at Durham University and Co-Director of Hearing the Voice.

Details and registration here:


On behalf of the HVNI Board, we’d like to invite you to the HVNI AGM 2021, which takes place on 14 April from 19.00 – 21.00 via a Zoom link.

The HVNI needs new Board members, so please find attached a nomination form with details. We look forward to receiving nominations in advance of the meeting. If you are interested, or know of others who are, but are not sure what it entails, please email me ( You can download the nomination form here.

In addition to the formal AGM procedures, we look forward to hearing how HV related work is progressing across the country from individuals and/or from groups. We would be interested to find out how voice hearers have dealt/are dealing with the challenges, caused by the pandemic. We would also like to hear how people have managed to continue with HV related activities in their areas.

At the Open Forum part of the meeting, attendees will have an opportunity to share their experiences, ask questions and provide suggestions.

Peter Bullimore has kindly agreed to be the guest speaker, sharing his insights and experiences of supporting the hearing voices community over the last year.

Provisional Schedule:  

19.00 Welcome to AGM, overview of HVNI activities over the last year

19.15 Peter Bullimore, guest speaker

19.45 Open Forum

20.30 Nominations for HVNI Board and election of Board members

21.00 AGM finishes

To express your interest in attending the AGM, please email Harry Gijbels at You will receive a Zoom link by email a few days in advance of the meeting. 

Please share with relevant people in your own networks.

We look forward to ‘seeing’ many of you at the AGM.

HVNI National Launch

The Launch of a National Network

The Hearing Voices Network Ireland (HVNI) launched on Friday 17th
April 2015 at the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin,
24 D’Olier Street, Dublin 2. The Network launch was led by Jacqui Dillon, Chair of the
Hearing Voices Network, England and founder of the Hearing Voices Movement worldwide,
Professor Marius Romme from the Netherlands, on whose research the approach was

Jacqui Dillon
Jacqui Dillon

With the launch of Hearing Voices Network Ireland, the Network joins over 30 nationally based networks around the world joined by shared goals and values, incorporating a fundamental belief that there are many ways to understand the experience of hearing voices and other unusual or extreme experiences. It is part of an international collaboration between people with lived experience, their families and professionals, to develop an alternative approach to coping with emotional distress that is empowering and useful to people, and does not start from the assumption that people who experience voice hearing have an illness.

Marius Romme
Prof. Marius Romme

Over the past 3 years, the Irish Institute of Mental Health Nursing embarked upon a programme of training delivered by Jacqui Dillon in the development and facilitation of Hearing Voices groups. This training was delivered nationwide with the support of the mental health nursing programmes in TCD, UCC, DCU, NUIG, St Angela’s, Sligo and UCD and the Nursing & Midwifery Planning & Development Units. Over 250 people: professionals; voice hearers; and family members attended the facilitator training and to date over 15 groups have been established across the length and breadth of the country, with more groups in the process of development.

Eithne Cusack – Director Nursing & Midwifery Planning & Development at Health Service Executive

The event also featured the official launch of the Hearing Voices Network Ireland logo
created by Michelle Dalton, Irish Voice Hearer and artist, and this website.

‘High Hopes’, Ireland’s first homeless choir provided the entertainment on the day.

The High Hopes Choir