SOFEA SESSIONS is a podcast focused on inspiring people through the sharing lived experience of mental health and wellbeing; aiming to re-shape the environment with innovative ideas and approaches. Delivered to you by SOFEA charity, SOFEA SESSIONS is a platform that empowers people to talk, to reduce stigma, help people relate to the episodes and feel less alone in their issues, in the hope that listeners and guest speakers can deepen the connections to themselves and their communities.

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Tuesday Jul 02, 2024

To celebrate Pride Month last month, Logan (he/him) has come onto the podcast to share his story about coming out as gay. In this episode, Logan, who is on SOFEA's education programme, bravely shares how coming out changed his life and how expressing himself through fashion and makeup impacts his self-confidence. 
This episode references bullying, homophobia and other potentially triggering topics. There is also some strong language in this episode. If you are in need of some support, click on the links below to see what support is available in Oxfordshire.
Links mentioned in the podcast:

Wednesday May 01, 2024

Episode 14 is with the lovely Jamie Douglas from Response organisation; talking all things neurodivergence. Previously a teacher in a secondary school, Jamie was diagnosed as Autistic aged 40, and is also a parent of a neurodivergent child, giving him a breadth of lived and professional experience. This episode covers everything from diagnosis, energy drinks, the UK education system, and even some guidance around language we should be using when talking about Autism and how to challenge unhelpful comments. 
Please like, share and subscribe!

Monday Apr 08, 2024

To celebrate Autism Acceptance week, we have a very special youth-led episode with CJ, Max and Mia who are all members of our Autism Advocacy Group. All three of these wonderful young people are at SOFEA on various education and employability programmes, after having struggled in the mainstream education system as Autistic young people.
They each share parts of the lives, focusing on themes important to them such as friendships, social cues, sensory overload, the education system and their experiences through diagnosis. 
This inspirational group continue to strive for more equality for neurodivergent people, and hope that people listening, whether you are Autistic or not will join the movement to better support and understand neurodivergent individuals!

Tuesday Mar 12, 2024

Trigger warning: this episode discusses men's mental health and themes around suicide. 
'Because everyone needs someone in their corner’.
In this month’s episode, John and Steve from @thecornermencic join us to discuss how they combine boxing and men’s mental health support. This episode covers everything from suicide prevention, myths around men’s mental health, …. oh, and The Cornermen even have a band (and merch!). Links are all below.
A huge thank you to John and Steve for coming onto the #SOFEASESSIONSPODCAST, and for all the amazing work you do in South Oxfordshire.
Instagram: @thecornermencic 
The Cornermen Band

Friday Feb 16, 2024

Episode 11 is here!
Alex Mackay joins us for a walk down memory lane; through his magnificent career and how it led him to being SOFEA’s Kitchen Magician. From cooking, to community, to connection, this episode covers so much, with a few laughs along the way. 
Ps. this episode does feature a tiny bit of strong language!

Friday Jan 05, 2024

Episode 10 is here!
Our Deputy CEO and Director of Business Innovation, Noel McCarthy has joined us to talk about why communicating our model and why it works is so important, he also reflects on his past four years at SOFEA and how this has led him to his new role, which aims to strategically connect with businesses that share our values and why this is integral to a sustainable SOFEA model, that can help more people, in better ways.
If you are an individual or business wanting to support what we do please email or if you have a general inquiry about SOFEA contact You can also find us at 

Friday Oct 13, 2023

In today’s episode our Social Prescriber Link Worker Selina has come on to talk about what Social Prescribing is, why we feel it’s needed in the community and how people can access the support.
At SOFEA, we work with the Didcot PCN and also in partnership with Age UK to support people with a wide range of social, emotional or practical needs, thereby enabling them to take greater control of their health and wellbeing.
For more information about Social Prescribing please go to our website , speak to your GP or email us at 
Please don't forget to leave feedback, like share or subscribe! 

Friday Jul 28, 2023

We are coming into our 10th year at SOFEA, so we invited our CEO Richard to reflect on lessons learnt over the last 9 years; focusing on how we can evolve and grow in the ever-changing society we live in; whilst benefiting the people in our communities. 
Richard talks about the importance of working towards reducing inequalities and how our 3-year strategy is going to help us achieve that. 
If you are passionate about making positive community change and want to find out more about what SOFEA's exciting plans are for the new few years, this is the episode for you.

Wednesday Jul 05, 2023

Today's episode is with Beth Francis, the Quality Improvement and Operations Manager at Response. Beth's professional background is in the care system, predominantly working in a children's home. In this episode Beth talks us though some of the challenges professionals and young people face and the importance of forming consistent, honest and solid relationships with 'children we care for' (also known as 'looked after children'). Beth also talks about how working with 'children we care for' influenced her behaviours and beliefs, stating that "behaviour is communication, these young people are not 'naughty' or 'bad', they are trying to get a deep need met and this is often the only way they know how". 
A huge thank you to Beth for coming on to share her experiences and give valuable insight into a professional's perspective of the care system.
For more information about SOFEA visit out website here or email 
Response Organisation
For advice on how to support 'children we care for' go to the NSPCC website.

Friday May 12, 2023

Trigger Warning: This episode goes into detail of physical and domestic abuse and may be distressing for some listeners. If you are affected by anything you hear today, the organisations listed below have been recommended by Kerry for those who need support or advice.
Today's episode is with Kerry, a survivor of domestic abuse who bravely shares her story in the hope of raising awareness of the signs, ensuring victims are aware of available support, as well as offering guidance to friends and family on how they can help people who are experiencing domestic abuse. In this emotional and brave episode, Kerry talks about the events that took place in the abusive relationship she was in, and how the support of her family and friends helped her into a process of recovery and healing.
Victim Support   
Women's Aid 
Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Services (ODAS) a2dominion  (Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire)
Educational videos on domestic abuse referenced in the episode:
Special thanks to Kerry for this truly moving, vulnerable and inspirational conversation. 
Email us at



At SOFEA we believe in using story telling and the sharing of lived experience as a therapeutic tool. The SOFEA SESSIONS episodes will cover a range of areas such as understanding anxiety, 'all things Trans' and other LGBTQ+ areas, dealing with shame and trauma, sports and wellbeing and lots more. 

Our aim is to support our listeners to not feel alone in the barriers that mental health challenges may create and enable our listeners to make deeper emotional connections to themselves. 


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