2014 Conference Speakers

Huseyin Djemil

Huseyin Djemil
Director, Green Apple Consulting Ltd
Founder, Towards Recovery

Huseyin Djemil is in recovery from addiction.  He set up Green Apple Consulting Ltd, a specialist substance misuse consultancy in 2009, which has a simple aim of improving the condition of clients, and therefore improving the lives of the people around them. He is a passionate advocate of recovery “because life really does get better when you’re off drugs and in control of your own destiny”

Towards Recovery was set up in 2012 to help develop a visible Recovery community in the Henley area and its first initiative, the monthly Recovery Café, provides a safe space for those in recovery from addiction and those affected by someone else’s addiction / recovery journey.

Huseyin has worked in the addictions field since 1993, from volunteer, drug worker, service manager, DAAT manager, and as London area drug strategy coordinator for the 7-London prisons.

Huseyin works with a range of organisations including several charities, government depts, universities, local authorities, religious institutions, think-tanks, a London wide consortia of organisations and other consultancies.

John Taylor
Duran Duran
Author: In The Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran’

John has openly talked about his alcohol and drug addiction, tough paths of recovery and the joy of building relationships with family and friends.

“I  am an alcoholic. A drug addict. I could not control my use of alcohol or drugs and my using caused me to behave in ways I never would have done had I been sober. 19 years ago, I checked into a rehab facility. I spent 30 days there. It turned my life around.

Elizabeth Burton-Phillips

Elizabeth Burton-Phillips
Founder, DrugFam

Elizabeth has experienced at first hand the trauma of witnessing her children’s addiction to drugs. Mother of three, Elizabeth’s twin sons both became addicted to heroin through the seemingly innocuous route of cigarettes, cannabis and so called recreational drugs to searching for a greater high. Tragically, Nick died at the age of 27 in 2004. His brother is now ten years in recovery and leads a drug free life with a supportive wife and children of his own.

Elizabeth found her recovery by writing “Mum, can you lend me twenty quid? – what drugs did to my family” a best seller which has now been adapted by Prescott born playwright and actor Mike How as a Theatre in Education play of the same name which tours schools, communities and prisons to high acclaim.

The play will show at the Henley Recovery Cafe on 18 Sept – free tickets available.


Neil McKeganey

Neil McKeganey
Centre for Drug Misuse Research

Neil is a sociologist and has carried out research in a wide range of topics related to drugs misuse including undertaking work on pre-teen drug use, on the link between drugs and crime, on the effectiveness of drug enforcement activities, on the effectiveness of drug treatment services and on the impact of drugs policy. He is a frequent commentator on drug related issues within the media and has written widely for a range of UK newspapers including the Guardian, Times, Sunday Times, Observer, Independent.

Anne-Marie Cockburn

Anne-Marie Cockburn
What Martha Did Next
Author: ‘5,742 Days, A Mothers Journey Through Loss’

On 20th July 2013 15-year-old Oxford schoolgirl Martha Fernback died suddenly after swallowing half a gram of MDMA powder, more widely known as ecstasy. Within hours her mother, Anne-Marie Cockburn, began to write down her feelings as a way to channel her shock and try to make sense of the tragic loss of her only child.

From the moment Martha died, Anne-Marie recognised that she still had a future, a life to live. This revealing, emotional and, ultimately, uplifting book shows how she used the art of writing, combined with determined self-belief, to guide her during this terrible time.

Ann Jansen-EastAnn Jansen-East
Victim, Volunteer and RJ Co-ordinator
RBWM Youth Offending Team

Ann has worked with young offenders since 1999 as a Restorative Justice Co-ordinator and more recently as a Victim Liaison officer and Mediator. She is a school governor, an Ambassador for Cancer Research UK and have very recently jointly set up a sister Recovery café in Maidenhead.

Ann is the mother of a recovering addict, and has seen the fight required to beat this terrible illness and the mental and physical strength it takes to get to a point where recovery is an option.

“I have not always followed the recommendations of various agencies to “stop enabling” and sometimes this has proved very difficult but for me I know only one way forward and that is to keep my son close and wait for that window of opportunity to arrive. Although the ‘window’ has opened and closed many times, I never give up hope that long term, forever recovery is not only possible, but probable!

I don’t profess to know any answers to anything, nor do I suggest that my way is the right or wrong way, I just know it is the only way for us as a family to help our son achieve sobriety and remain in recovery long term.”

Wendy Dawson

Wendy Dawson:
CEO, The Ley Community

The Ley Community is a residential drug/alcohol therapeutic community rehab in Oxfordshire. Wendy has worked in the drug and alcohol field since 1981, as a practitioner for many years in the north east before moving to Oxford to take up post as Director of Services for YWCA GB, then as the first Chief Executive of Connexions North London, National Director of YAP UK in Brixton, Hackney and Haringey.

She was formerly the developer and lead lecturer at Ruskin College, Oxford’s Foundation Degree in Youth and Community work. Wendy has also specialised in adults with learning disabilities.

Treflyn Lloyd-RobertsTreflyn Lloyd-Roberts

ISAAC is an international network of Christians working in rehabilitation, street agencies, counselling and prevention in nearly 70 countries. We connect, encourage and equip members by sharing knowledge, hosting events and facilitating training in addiction-related issues.

AndyAndy Partington
CEO, Yeldall Manor

Andy came to Yeldall in 2010 from a background in university teaching and church leadership. His most recent post was in Santa Cruz, Bolivia – a centre for cocaine production and trafficking. Andy has a unique perspective on the world of residential rehabilitation, having spent his childhood living on-site at Yeldall Manor.