Trauma Breakthrough, which also works under the name Breakthrough, was founded in 2013. We are a charity based in Bath and operating across the south-west of England. We provide specialist mental health services and support for adult survivors of abuse and all forms of trauma. We also offer training and consultancy to organisations and individuals who want to learn to support survivors more effectively.
Head to the ‘About Trauma‘ page to find out more about why we do what we do.
Breakthrough’s “mission” is four-fold:
– To change the ways adult survivors of abuse and other forms of trauma receive help. Trauma care should not be “one size fits all”.
– To offer community-based therapeutic and support services to help survivors recover from the effects of trauma and reclaim their lives.
– To raise awareness of the long term impact of trauma on mental, emotional and physical health.
– To equip individuals and organisations with more effective ways of supporting survivors of trauma within their community
Giles Lascelle – CEO & Clinical Director
Giles has over 30yrs experience as a psychotherapist and trainer. He’s worked in the NHS, social services, foster homes, and with a number of voluntary agencies in the fields of mental health, addiction and homelessness. He worked with the first ever NHS Staff Support Service, providing therapy and training for NHS and Emergency Services staff. Giles is a full clinical member of the UKCP and was previously part of the executive committee for the British Psychodrama Association (BPA).
He specialises in helping adult survivors of childhood abuse and trauma. He also has a passion for seeing communities and organisations trained and equipped to support to survivors and develop a greater understanding of mental health needs – because ‘it takes a village’!
Giles lives in Bath with his wife Ally and an insanely overindulged cat, Marmite.
Holly – Services & Development Manager
Holly is the glue that holds Breakthrough together. She heads up the operational side of Breakthrough (both in Bath and further afield), from client support and staff training, through to running all our services, our crisis support, and drop-in support. She’ll talk you through the process of starting therapy or trauma training, and answer any questions you have (big or small!).
Should you ever need post-therapy chocolate or a natter, she always has some chocolate in her desk drawer for those who need it and will find a way to give you time even when it’s manically busy. She lives on coffee and snacks, and has an unnecessary number of photos of pretty looking meals on her phone that one day she may remember to put on Instagram!
Louise Turner – Psychotherapist
Louise has worked in many mental health charities and services over the years and currently works for the NHS in Bristol running specialist clinics for FGM survivors. She loves yoga, making pottery and slowly turning her home into an indoor jungle. We jokingly cause Louise our office goat, it’s not as harsh as it sounds! She finds an artistic use for almost anything we’re about to throw away, so her desk is often covered in weird and wonderful donated things or bits of scrap she’s gathered from around the Support Centre!
Louise is a huge fan of all things creative, runs our Art Therapy groups and offers a safe space for 1-2-1 clients to talk or use creative activities to work through their difficult experiences. She is also the queen of weird but wonderful questions, “shower thoughts” (Google it!) and Netflix recommendations!
Maddie Jessel – Psychotherapist
Maddie is a qualified, HCPC registered Psychotherapist with a background in the creative arts. She has worked at the NDRC in London, where she ran an art psychotherapy group for asylum seekers and refugees, and set up a 1-2-1 therapy space for LGBTQIA+ clients. She currently works at a therapeutic artistic community in Bristol, supporting adults with complex mental health difficulties. She loves swimming, basketball, experimental cooking (often with questionable results), cups of tea, and carpentry… favourite project so far has been helping build a treehouse for adults! Maddie works with Breakthrough part-time, seeing people 1-2-1, working with our groups, and also heading up our START Project!
Jessica Barber – Assistant Psychotherapist
Jess is in her fourth year of an MA in Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy. Jess spent 10 months on a part-time placement with us supporting our 2 therapy groups across 2020-21, and joined the staff team in September 2021 as a trainee psychotherapist. She is absolutely lovely! Jess has been a riding instructor and a teaching assistant. She has a large family and too many pets! And is also the reason we have so many packets of biscuits!
Eve B – Placement Student
Eve will be on student placement with us full-time from August 2021 to June 2022. She will be taking part in all aspects of day-to-day life at the Breakthrough Support Centre working in our office, helping with our various services, supporting our therapy groups – and everything in between!
Eve loves theatre, singing, baking and chatting, and (like the rest of the team) charity shopping! And despite being tech-savvy, she somehow broke her computer multiple times in her first week – we gave her a medal!
Becca – Project Support Worker
Becca is one of our all-singing all-dancing team members who has spent most of her career working in mental health, from ED groups to in-patient care. She’s here to offer support on hard days or with things like benefits applications and mental health skills, she also helps with activity days, fundraising, and groups. Becca is a single mum to 2 spirited and wild and wacky boys, and a soppy black cat called Ninja.
Sarah Metcalfe – Placement
Sarah is in her fourth year training as a psychodrama psychotherapist at the London Centre for Psychodrama. She will be supporting our Friday therapy group this year. Sarah has always been curious about people and has a passion for documentaries. She has worked in the media making films about the arts, education and racism. She loves fringe theatre and new writers sharing their stories. She has recently dusted off the knitting needles and is helping her daughter knit a blanket for the cats.
Lucy – Community Cat
Lucy is the latest addition to Breakthrough and is having great fun. She was born in Spring 2021, so despite now being quite big, she’s still only a kitten. Our hope is she’ll grow to be a great therapy cat, but at the moment she’s our ‘community cat’ instead, as mostly, she just likes being a stubborn cat and getting to hang out around the Support Centre to welcome visitors, play with toys, and knock things off of people’s desks!
Like all cats she is FULL of sass, but also loves to fall asleep on people’s chairs (usually the second they’ve stood up!), or curl up in her bed and purr away – she has a very loud purr. And she LOVES to try and steal the staff team’s lunch, as far as she’s concerned, all food is Lucy’s food.
We know that cats offer something really special for people who are feeling triggered and need something soft to stroke or a bit of a distraction. Their purrs help regulate breathing and heart rates, and they’re just generally fun to have around 🙂
We also have a wider team who help us do what we do: from Amanda who cleans our Support Centre, through to Befrienders who support our Service Users, and volunteers who help at events, with our projects, with decorating, or with serving tea & coffee at training courses.
Breakthrough has always been and will always be something that’s built on community, done together, and for anyone who needs us.
Breakthrough is governed by a Board of Trustees whose job it is to oversee the operation and development of the charity. The Trustees are:
Dr Fergus Law MBChB. BSc. MRCPsych
Vacancies for new trustees!
We wouldn’t be able to keep doing the work that we do without the support of our partners and funders.
The National Lottery Community Fund
Avon & Somerset PCC
The Ministry of Justice
3rd Sector Group
Arnold Clark Community Fund
The Leathersellers’ Company
The Burden Trust
The Burges Salmon Charitable Trust
Souter Charitable Trust
Business Partnership - Charity of the Year
We are so excited about becoming charity partners with Royds Withy King for the next two years and be involved with a firm that is committed to raising awareness and helping those who are struggling. Each year the staff at RWK come together to choose a charity they free passionate about and who they want to support across the next two years – and for 2021-23, they chose us!
“I’m really looking forward to the next 2 years supporting this small, but incredibly important charity. They have not long moved to the support centre which gives their users a safe space to relax, attend therapy and participate in group sessions. Their big dream is to buy a respite house for trauma survivors – a facility that is not currently available in our area. It would be great if we can help them achieve that through our fundraising efforts over 2021-23!”
Sophie Webb, Charity Committee representative at RWK