The recovery café held in HMP Barlinnie, the adult prison in Glasgow holding over 1100 adult male prisoners, is run by Natalie Logan and her team of volunteers who give up their time for free to work with both short and long term prisoner’s to teach them basic coping skills and help them heal their trauma.
The idea behind the café is that drugs and alcohol abuse is a symptom of a deeply underlying cause, treat the cause the symptom disappears. Most prisoners have suffered multiple traumas of adverse childhood experiences.
There was around 25 men in attendance during our 3 hour session. We done numerous exercises on the physical sensations that happen during stress and also the physical and psychological symptoms of stress. The idea is that when people know better they can do better. We then taught them deep abdominal breathing, self induced relaxation and mental rehearsal. Rehearsing there 24 hours ahead in deep meditation by imagining themselves coping well with all the challenges they will face living in very harsh conditions.
We also touched on some coaching concepts such as their ideal version of themselves as members of society, parents, partners, employees ect. Discussing values and beliefs.
There is great work going on in the project to previous difficulty to reach men.