Northern Ireland news

Special film screening in Belfast to benefit social justice charity

Marie Louise McConville

A Northern Ireland charity which supports people with mental health and addictions is to stage a "thought-provoking and insightful" event to help raise funds for its work.

The Magic is Within You event, which will take place at The MAC Theatre in Belfast city centre on Thursday, September 1, will raise funds for Extern.

The event includes the screening of a special film about Scottish woman Vivian McKinnon, who overcame a traumatic childhood of abuse and addiction to become a successful businesswoman and motivational speaker.

As a therapist Vivian also helps many people manage the legacy of trauma which they may be facing in their lives.

The film charts Vivian's story from her traumatic upbringing in Scotland in the seventies, where she faced physical, sexual and emotional abuse, before turning to drugs and alcohol while still a child, then her escape from domestic abuse as a young woman.

The screening will be followed by a Q&A session with host DJ Cate Conway.

Speaking about the film, Vivian said: "Trauma and related addictions are often accompanied by deep shame so opening up about it is one of the first steps towards healing.

"I say this often, you are not your story," she said.

"Each of us has the magic within us to change the narrative, choose a different path, reinvent ourselves and live a better life. I look forward to sharing my own personal experiences and the insights I have gained from them as well as working with some of the world's leading trauma experts".

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Northern Ireland news