Our 20th Anniversary Recovery Day 2023

Thank you so much to everyone who joined us at our 20th Anniversary Recovery Celebration Day this October. We felt it was a huge success and thanks to those that have already sent us some positive feedback, it is much appreciated and we are glad you enjoyed the day as much as we did. We were joined by some inspiration organization’s and we heard some truly moving personal recovery stories.

This was our first experience using the Belmont Park venue, and we found it to be excellently situated and highly accessible. Its bright, open, and contemporary ambiance contributed to creating the ideal atmosphere for our event.

The day started with a warm welcome from our two Co-Managing Directors – Jody Coyle and Sami Goulding. Jody and Sami reflected on Recovery Devon’s last year since the last celebration day and they also talked about their new role since stepping up as Managing Directors.

We then heard from 2 individuals that shared with us their experience of receiving funding for recovery focused projects via our Community Development Fund. Iola Weir shared her heartfelt story of her recovery journey and the amazing work she is doing in the community. Iola reflected on the workshops that were funded by Recovery Devon in 2021 but also on the impact of these creative sessions on her own recovery. Iola can be contacted via her Instagram where you can also see other art work and available workshops – @badgirlbolshoi

Next, we had the privilege of listening to Mark Duckworth, one of the recipients of this year’s Community Development Fund. Mark has initiated a support group for men in collaboration with CoLab. It was genuinely enlightening to learn about the endeavors and advancements he’s achieved in aiding men’s recovery. Mark discussed how the group naturally evolved based on the participants’ preferences each week, and his enthusiasm for establishing an empowering environment was evident as he spoke.

Pippa, Luca, Philip- The Washing Machine of Destiny

We also heard from Philip Robinson, Luca Saunders and Pippa Marriott, who together form The Washing Machine of Destiny! Philip, Luca and Pippa gave a wonderful ‘in conversation with’ on owning the creative process, the power of sharing stories and how this can help you explore yourself and who you are in the world. The Washing Machine of Destiny was also funded by our Community Development Fund this year and it was wonderful to hear of the wide audience that the show and team have reached, and the progression into workshops too.


Healthscape also joined us and delivered a fantastic demonstration and presentation showcasing their ongoing work. Paul, representing Healthscape, addressed our audience against the backdrop of the ice pods they generously brought along for everyone to experience. Healthscape, an extraordinary organization based at GROW in Paignton, specializes in organizing cold water swimming workshops and provides substantial support to numerous individuals who venture into the sea each month. Thanks to funding from Recovery Devon, they now have Lumi pods available, allowing those who cannot access the sea to experience cold water immersion. Our very own Co-Managing Director, Sami, gave it a go, as did some members of the public.

We then ended with Stephen Ball from WellRaver who gave us an inspiration talk as he shared how he got to the point in his life today where he is now embracing every day and is doing something he passionate about – DJ’ing and putting on raves for people, along with a mental health support group.

It was also fantastic to have some stands and displays up by Petes Dragons, MoMENtum, Magic Carpet – a big thank you for coming along and supporting us and the public.

Hearing about the positive impact these projects are making throughout various regions of Devon was truly inspiring. We remain consistently amazed by the fortitude and kindness displayed by countless individuals and the goodwill of numerous organizations. While we were commemorating our 20th anniversary, the true cause for celebration was observing the remarkable efforts of community members. The unwavering resilience and determination people demonstrate in their personal journeys of recovery and their commitment to guiding others on their own paths were truly remarkable.

A final shout out goes to St Sidwells Community Centre for providing us with refreshments and some delicious lunch, we have received some wonderful feedback about the incredible pizza! All left over pizza, soup and cakes were donated to the homeless at the end of the day.

If these inspiring projects have sparked some ideas for you, our Community Development Fund will be reactivated and ready to accept applications in the early part of next year. Don’t hesitate to reach out for additional information. We sincerely appreciate your participation, and we look forward to welcoming you again next year!

If you have any feedback for us we have a short feedback form that can be accessed here: https://forms.gle/rwmXpbAh2PLPuV5k9

Contact us by emailing – hello@recoverydevon.co.uk