what’s on

awareness acknowledgement acceptance action

february 2021


Woodbrooke’s learning programmes seek to support, inform and transform Quakers and others as individuals and communities. Through our learning we hope to nourish spiritual development, strengthen the Quaker community and enable and encourage work for a peaceful and just world

quakers for climate action

Could you correspond about climate with a Quaker penpal, get creative with textiles, or take part in a socially-distanced springtime action? These are just some of the ways for Quakers to share their vision for a sustainable and just future ahead of the crucial COP26 UN climate talks this November see more below scroll down click pic to discover more ways

As a faith community, Quakers have pledged to address the root causes of climate breakdown. To do this, we are called to act at every level: locally, nationally and internationally.

join a socially distanced spring time action
Journey to COP26 is a Quaker initiative calling on people of other faiths and people of no faith to join a journey of awareness, understanding and action ahead of the COP26 UN climate talks. You are invited to celebrate the natural world by making a short journey to any place that is sacred to you. Take a picture of yourself in the spot and post it on social media, with a caption explaining why you feel called to protect the Earth and all its inhabitants. 
Saturday 10 April & Sunday 11 April 
Spiritual preparation for COP26
Quaker Peace & Social Witness and Woodbrooke are working together to run monthly online sessions, supporting Quakers who are interested in taking action on climate change in the run up to and during COP26. These sessions are open to all Quakers and will provide a space for spiritual grounding, as well as sharing and learning about taking action for climate justice
Tuesday fortnightly 7-8pm free

Join the COP26 Coalition

Quakers in Britain are part of COP26 a network of groups and individuals from Scotland and the rest of the UK, including trade unions, climate justice groups, faith groups, students and youth, migrant and racial justice networks.

The coalition aims to organise for COP26 in a transformative, hope-filled way, working in solidarity with international climate movements. 

Write to a Quaker in another nation
Take part in Protecting God’s Creation, a new project where Quakers around the world connect in correspondence about the climate. This initiative is being launched to build international Quaker connections in the build-up to COP26 and is organised by Friends World Committee for Consultation and Britain Yearly Meeting.

craft a creative response

The Loving Earth Project is an arts project that celebrates the things we love that are threatened by growing environmental breakdown. This creative multimedia exploration includes a community textile project which you can contribute to, or borrow to display, to inspire others. The project was started by a small group of Quakers and is open to everyone. Woodbrooke is offering Loving Earth Project workshops for meetings and other Quaker groups. Caring for the world we love

great british wildflower hunt

Over this spring and summer, we will bring you four different Hunts with over 70 different flowers to get to know. Starting with spring favourites, from the first yellows of celandines and primroses, through to bluebells and cuckooflower and from the humble speedwell to glamorous wild orchids there is something for all ages and levels in 2021’s Great British Wildflower Hunt

register here Month of May

what love can do

quaker peace & social witness spring sessions

Our unstoppable faith in actionTuesday 20 April 12.30–2pm ENDED

Difficult conversations in difficult times Tuesday 27 April 5.30–7pm ENDED

Justice is love in action Tuesday 4 May 12.30–2pm ENDED

Working with decision-makers in challenging times Thursday 13 May 5.30–7pm

Campaigning for peace together with your ‘opponent’ learning from East African peace activists Tuesday 18 May 12.0–2pm

A brief story of climate justice: from slavery to now Tuesday 25 May 5:30–7pm

Freedom from fear and harm – building peace in Britain today Thursday 3 June 5.30–7pm

20 April – 3 June 2021 Online BOOK HERE

Everyone is welcome. If you have never heard of Quakerism before or indeed you’re new to thinking about how we can act in the world to create peace and positive change you are welcome. You do not have to be a Quaker!

city nature challenge

April 30 – May 30 learn more here

awakening the sage within

Today, most people approaching their older years can expect to live another 20 or 30 years. How do you want to live those years? Sage-ing (also known as Conscious Ageing) is a model for engaging those years more deliberately, joyfully, and compassionately. Sage-ing can help us develop a balanced vision for ageing that is personally fulfilling and beneficial to others.

This workshop is for people who embrace any faith, humanistic practice, or none, and is based on the best-selling book ‘From Age-ing to Sage-ing. A Profound New Vision of Growing Older by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi.

Live sessions Tuesdays 9am-11.30am (UK) 4th May -25th May £72


nourishing well-being: with mindful practices qigong meditation relaxation

Here is an opportunity to experience the yin and yang of qigong movement and stillness in body and mind. Qi is often translated as ‘the breath of life’. Qigong is gentle and simple, a way to nourish body, mind and spirit.

On this course we will practice a sequence of flowing, graceful exercises to replenish our energy and well-being after the long winter when we may have been somewhat sedentary.

The yang energy of Springtime is a wonderful time to begin afresh, to turn over a new leaf. We will also practice the art of deep relaxation, mindfulness of breathing, meditation and overall, take good care of ourselves, establish ourselves in the here and now and feel fully alive.

8th May – 29th May Live sessions are every Saturday at 10am -11:30am £72 BOOK HERE

no time to lose time to act

Join with indigenous activists, experts, artists, rebels from around the world, common people, celebrities – anyone willing to join in or support resisting the destruction of our world and future.

An online mass festival for civil resistance with love, featuring Vandana Shiva, Charles Eisenstein, Jem Bendell, and more.

Register HERE

8 May World on line festival for cvil resistance

a quaker response to climate collapse

The climate catastrophe leads different people to different conclusions: one is that there is no real chance of survival of our civilisation. This course will briefly explore the scientific facts behind this conclusion, with a critical assessment of future possibilities.

Emotional reactions and their links to the fear of death will be considered, together with ways of expanding peace and social justice as we live through an increasingly bleak future. How can our civilisation die well?

We shall think about ways in which the Quaker movement can enable people to cope with profound grief and find ways of living in love. Together, we anticipate that we shall find plenty of hope for a spiritually rich existence as we go through the difficulties that lie ahead.

10th May – 6th June£36 BOOK HERE

Live sessions are every Monday and Friday at 6.30-8.30pm

loving earth: making polluters pay

This one day session is designed to help us better understand the work against climate crisis being done on a national stage and guide us towards what we can do as individuals in support of and alongside this work.

We will hear about the campaign to instigate The Robin Hood Tax on fossil fuel companies and how the UK government should show leadership on establishing new and additional sources of finance for countries suffering loss and damage caused by climate-related disasters. 

Make polluters pay

We will then use spiritual practices including meditation, worship sharing and individual reflection to work towards a creative response to what we have heard.

11 May 10.30-4pm£20 BOOK HERE

why do quakers worship in silence

Why do Quakers worship in silence?

This session will be a chance to explore unprogrammed Quaker worship as it is practiced today in Britain and around the world.

We will think about questions like: What is the role of silence? Is silence important itself or is it a method for approaching spiritual matters? What are people doing during Quaker worship? Why don’t Quakers want to plan what they say in worship? How does spoken ministry relate to silence? Does the use of silence tell us anything about Quaker theology or understandings of God?

Whether you have been attending Quaker worship for years or never tried it, this session will provide an opportunity to learn about different approaches to it and experiences of it.

There will also be a short period of unprogrammed worship within the session.

13th May 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm£15 BOOK HERE

the care crisis: a quaker view

All of us will at some period in our lives be or have been a carer or someone who is cared for.

How do we want to be cared for? What should carers be paid? How should unpaid carers be supported?

The pandemic has shown us how essential caring for others is to a just society and how the practice of care has been neglected by governments.

The session will explore what care is and how Quakers might contribute to the debate about care in their countries.

This is a taster session for a course on a Quaker approach to care to be offered later in the year.

13th May 2-4pm – £15 BOOK HERE

spirituality and creative practice: zen drawing

This session is inspired by Frederick Franck whose spiritual practice is drawing. You need no special equipment, just anything that will make a mark on some paper.

Drawing is about looking very carefully so that you see and understand the essential nature of what you study. Franck takes this further, suggesting that when we draw we immerse ourselves in that which we draw so that we become part of it and lose ourselves in the process. It is part of seeing with wonder and excitement, seeing with the heart, getting to the truth rather than producing a pretty picture; a form of meditation.

The Spirituality and Creative Practice series of sessions will enable people to learn from practising artists about different creative practices and encourage them to try it for themselves using a playful and spiritual approach . Timed to be accessible to working people, and able to include older children and their parents. Families attending together need only book one place.

15th May 2.30pm-4.30pm £20


education beyond covid: reality resilience and renewal

An introductory live session initiated by the Quaker Values in Education (QVinE) group which will share educational experiences in schools and at home over the past year, and look towards the future.

The event will explore the following themes:how the pandemic laid bare the inequalities in our society, which affect young people in the education system at all levels;

how the pandemic laid bare the inequalities in our society, which affect young people in the education system at all levels;

how some schools and adults demonstrated resilience in finding creative solutions to problems they and their students and children faced;

aspirations of how we can take the best of what we have learned into a better future for education

We aim to gather a wide range of contributors – parents, teachers, governors, teacher trainers and young people – sharing their views, and offering their lived experience in shaping future directions in education.

Quaker Values in Education (QVinE) are a small, independent minded body, with a Quaker background, which originated from a concern about the direction that state education, enforced through the inspection system, was being driven.

15th May 9.30 am-12 noon pay as you are led BOOK HERE

urban tree festival

celebrating trees in London and beyond

The 2021 festival runs from 15-23 May book here

addressing colonialism and racism in quaker peace and service work

Quakers have been known for their work for peace their relief work after natural disasters and wars and their commitment to working to end injustice for a long time.

It can be hard for us to acknowledge that the way we have done and are doing peace and service work may be perpetuating the legacy of colonialism and structural racism.

We are not uniquely immune from our colonial history or the racism that is embedded in national and global institutions.

This course will help us to understand how our Quaker peace and service work is affected and, most importantly, how we can challenge and change this as we continue to work for peace and justice in the world

22nd May – 25th June Live sessions are Wednesdays (no session on 16 June) at 7pm-9pm


working for peace in the middle east

CND online conference

Join CND and guest speakers to discuss the current situation in the Middle East and how we can best campaign for peace in the region. Will the Middle East ever be nuclear-free? And what is the UK’s role in the region?

22 May 1pm-4.15pm

register here free

meeting needs: a compassionate approach to our well being

The current COVID pandemic has brought into sharp focus the social and racial inequalities that pre-dispose people not only to infection but also to mental ill-health. This is a course about indentifying our human needs to better understand our own mental wellbeing and that of those around us, thus creating the possibility of a more compassionate community for everyone.

At times of mental distress and anguish it can be hard to identify and understand our difficult feelings. When we view our setbacks from a perspective of unmet needs, we may begin to find ways to satisfy those needs in healthy, life affirming ways. We find we have innate resources and gifts which help us build our own mental and spiritual resilience, as well as strengthening our relationships.

Meeting Needs is an easy to understand and practical course. Through fun and interactive exercises, participants will develop deeper understanding and compassion for self and others. The course speaks to Quakers’ historic and current concern for mental health and well-being. We will introduce holistic organising ideas which not only help people suffering emotional distress, but also have the potential to create a more just society.

27th May – 23rd June Live sessions are every Thursday at 2pm-4pm £54 BOOK HERE

what’s next? becoming an anti racist activist

In this course about anti-racism, we will use the book “This Book is Anti-Racist” by Tiffany Jewell to ask the questions “what next?” when it comes to moving from self-awareness to anti-racism activism.

We will follow the book, using early chapters to centre us in the acknowledgement of our own racism and then move to the chapters on how to proceed with the work. Embedded in the early parts there is an identification of our own identity, including the various communities we belong to (i.e. Quaker, chocolate tasters, theatre lovers, dog owners, etc.), which will be important later because these are where we will be able to do the work of anti-racism.

Participants are encouraged to do assignments each week that will help set us up to pursue anti-racism work. For example, one week the assignment might be to map your neighborhood to discover places and people and organisations you didn’t know about. In the online forum we will continue the discussions and strengthen the links with each other that we hope will continue past the course so we can support each other moving forward.

28th May – 22nd June – Live sessions are every Tuesday at 6.30pm -8pm – £60 BOOK HERE

quaker question time with Preet Kaur Gill MP

Quakers in Britain invite you to Quaker Question Time, where Friends can discuss key political issues with the Shadow International Development Secretary, Preet Kaur Gill MP.

Tue, June 8 6:PM – 7:pm PM BST free BOOK HERE

disability and social justice

Since the 1970s, disabled people have turned approaches to disability upside down, arguing we need to focus on environments and attitudes which disable, rather than the deficits of the person. What does this mean, and how can we work together to build a more inclusive world? If we aspire to “Rights not Charity” and “Nothing About Us, Without Us”, what role is there for non-disabled allies?

5th June 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm led by Tom Shakespeare £15 BOOK HERE

becoming blended worshipping communities: exploring the opportunities and challenges

Online worship has proven a dynamic place for people to connect with Spirit, an accessible place for Friends to overcome barriers and be together, and a welcoming place for those connecting with Quakers for the first time. It has also presented challenges.

As some meetings prepare to return to some worship in person, questions blaze about how to tend to worship and the life of our meetings as we continue forward in a blended manner.

  • How can we maintain an inclusive, safe and gathered worshipping environment?
  • How can we gather safely in person, where might we worship?
  • How do we include those who wish to continue to worship online, or those who can only join our meetings this way?
  • How do we welcome those who might have never joined worship in person?
  • What does it mean to be in community in Spirit when some worship in person and some worship online?
  • What opportunities for spiritual nurturing are we able to offer in support of the worship experience?
  • Explore these questions and others together in faithful community with staff members from Pendle Hill and Woodbrooke and leave more confident to support your meeting moving forward.

This course takes place over three days, with a total of six live sessions each lasting 90 minutes. There will be a mixture of input, individual reflection, small group discussion and plenaries.

11th June – 13th June – £65 BOOK HERE

claridge house for rest and renewal

Claridge House will be opening for B&B on 17 May   We will be running Full Board Personal Retreats from 4 – 14 June. In addition to the courses listed in the programmes, we now regularly offer Full Board personal retreats one week of every month.

Summer Programme Summer Programme calendar

Turning the Tide’s work includes developing and facilitating workshops, participatory training and online courses for Quakers (and others) seeking to make peaceful change.

For more info email us at turningtide@quaker.org.uk or call us on 0207 663 1172.