Baobab Centre for Young Survivors in Exile – Surviving violence, creating hope, rebuilding lives


Community Activities

two young women paddle on the seafront

Baobab is a community – with events and activities throughout the year

At Baobab we aim to create a transitional space and a community of exile where our young unaccompanied people can meet other young people, explore their talents, challenge their sports skills, and discuss and engage in dialogue with all members of the community.

Regular Community Meetings

We hold 8 community meetings a year for Baobab’s young people and staff. At the meetings, anyone can talk about any aspect of his or her experience of Baobab, or their lives outside the Centre. We encourage everyone to speak, to listen and to be heard. These meetings enable young people to explore their relationship with a community.  They can learn to express and defend their own views without fear of violence and explore their place in a community after experiences of persecution, oppression and rejection in their home communities.

And before each community meeting we first share a meal where everyone is welcome to bring food they have cooked.

table laden with food and drink
Baobab Centre community meal

Group activities

We run regular and special activities within our therapeutic community. Some of these are regular group activities such as our weekly arts drop-in sessions or regular music workshops. Other activities take place over Easter, summer, winter holidays and half-term periods during the school/college holidays when many of the young people who attend feel particularly isolated without the structure of college life. Young people and staff together set up projects that take place throughout the year, such as bowling, going to the theatre, a walk in a London park to spot birds, a bike ride or a beach trip…

Therapeutic residential retreats

In the summer, we offer the young people an opportunity to take part in a therapeutic residential retreat. This provides an important opportunity for intensive therapeutic group work while also helping to build self-care skills and facilitate learning about working as part of a team. We hold daily therapeutic groups using drama and story telling, music and physical activity. On some retreats, young people experience life on the farm and take care of animals and plants. Meal preparation, always a key part of the day, takes place in small groups which plan, prepare and share what they have cooked with everyone on the retreat. There are also plenty of opportunities each day for fun (swimming, climbing, etc) and outings to the local area.

portrait of three young people sitting on a hill looking out over a landscape

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