OYA Retreats are dedicated to delivering an holistic movement and mindfulness practice to Black women and women of colour. On exclusive retreats in the United Kingdom and abroad, guests are offered room to explore, reflect, release, and renew.
Recalling the Elements: Fire & Wind
Join Nikita, Shiggi and Stacie for their first weekend yoga and mindfulness retreat together at Poundon House, a beautifully exclusive house and grounds located just 60 miles northwest of London. The retreat will include yoga, mindfulness, movement, vegetarian meals, as well as free time to explore the area, swim, rest, read, and relax.
The elements are expressive and reflected in our own moods. We move between emotions of hot and cold, happy and angry, sometimes without even recognising or understanding why. At this weekend retreat we will explore the seemingly opposite poles that both fire and wind represent and how, in conversation with one another, transformation becomes possible.
On the one hand, fire is irreplaceable in its warming capabilities, for example of food or the body, and it can even illuminate one’s path. If untamed, however, it can burn and scorch everything in its way. Similarly, wind offers us a cooling system and can provide the energy we need to power up. At high speeds, however, wind becomes an indestructible force bringing chaos to anything it touches. This retreat will benefit anyone looking to find balance in the midst of the world’s extremes.
The body is the only true home that we will ever have, so it’s important that it be nourished and cherished. Over the course of the weekend, guests will be led in movement and mindfulness practice to do exactly that. Grounded movement and powerful Hatha flow sessions that invigorate will be balanced with soothing mindfulness exercises to leave guests feeling rejuvenated.
The retreat schedule is subject to change and will be released to registered guests closer to the date. Please have a look at our example schedule here.
The retreat is fully catered with dairy- and wheat-free vegetarian cuisine. On Friday evening a light dinner will be served. Saturday and Sunday morning, a warm broth will be offered before the movement session, and breakfast after the movement session. On Saturday, a filling and warm lunch will be served and a light and healthy dinner. On Sunday, guests will receive a boxed lunch, if they desire to take something with them on their journey home.
Learn about the three instructors, including Founder Stacie CC Graham on the OYA Retreats website.
DJ Candice McKenzie: B.W.I.E 10th Anniversary Shero
Black Women in Europe Blog™ 10th Anniversary notes:
I picked Candice to be a Black Women in Europe Blog™ 10th Anniversary Shero for many reasons but mainly for her positive energy that I find completely infectious! I first blogged about Candice in March 2009 when I learned about her Dolly Mixes. She is known for her signature blend of house and Gospel music that makes me want to sing and dance and laugh at the same time. I also chose Candice for her drive, diverse appeal and creativity. I am thrilled to announce DJ Candice McKenzie has created an exclusive 10th Anniversary mixtape for us:
I hope you like our exclusive B.W.I.E 10th Anniversary Mixtape as much as I do. Feel free to download it, be sure to share it via Twitter, Facebook and all the other usual suspects. Leave a comment for Candice on HearThis too, she’s a darling.
Thank you Candice for celebrating our 10th! Thanks for being our Shero.
Here’s more about Candice:
Of Ghanaian and Jamaican descent, Candice McKenzie was born and raised in London, UK.
Picture courtesy Candice McKenzie
She has been DJing since 1999 and plays Soulful, Uplifting, Inspirational / Gospel House Music with a sprinkle of Deep Beats.
Picture courtesy Candice McKenzie
She has won two BEFFTA (Black, Entertainment, Film, Fashion, TV & Arts) awards for Female DJ of the Year – 2009 & DJ of the Year 2010. She DJ’s at various club nights in the UK and Europe, and in countries including Croatia, Georgia, Greece, India, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Poland, Russia, Siberia, Slovenia, Ukraine and the USA.
Picture courtesy Candice McKenzie
Candice also DJ’s for high profile corporate clients. These have included T Mobile, Stella McCartney, Fashion TV, Havana Club, Smirnoff, Selfridges, Soho Gyms, Breakthrough for Breast Cancer and the BBC working as the Eurovision Song Contest UK Jury in May 2014.
In 2010 the Black Women in Europe™ Blog released its first Power List naming 58 women across Europe in 6 categories. For the past two years the list was called down to highlight 5 women. This year the awardees are in the following categories: Arts, Media, Politics, Science and Sports.
This list, presented in alphabetical order, is intended to acknowledge powerful black women in Europe and to inspire others to reach their full potential.
What constitutes power?
Power is defined as the ability to act or produce an effect.
The Power List does not aim to assess rank but rather to showcase influential women who, in some cases well known and in others, are women who should be known.
Arabella Kiesbauer – Austria – Journalist/TV Personality
Arabella Kiesbauer’s career started already in the 1980s at Austrian Broadcasting ORF before she moved to host her own talk show in Germany on the German TV channel Pro7 for 10 years and significantly influenced the TV landscape there. She returned to ORF in 2002 to lead the talent show Star Mania.
She’s also hosted TV programs on ARD in Monte Carlo, Berlin TV station N24 TV, has presented the Viennese Opera Ball 5 times as well as the Lifetime Ball. In addition Arabella Kiesbauer works in international TV in different languages including Sylvestergala 2005 on Arte TV in French; the International Cirkusfestival 2007 in Monte Carlo on ARD also in French and the FIFA World Players Gala 2007 on Eurosport in English.
Arabella has also worked as an actress in 1996 in Das Superweib and 2004 in Kommissar Rex. She has won several awards recognizing her television work. Arabella is also a model and ambassador for shoe company Vogele Shoes.
She is a two time published author having written Nobody is perfect in 1999, and later My African Heart.
Since 2008 she has been an ambassador for integration in the team of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Integration. She became the host of Kiddy Contest in 2012 on Puls 4 and in 2014 became the presenter of a popular show helping Austrian farmers find love.
She’s won 3 awards for her TV work and in 2013 she was honored for the commitment to tolerance and against racism with the Golden Medal of the Republic of Austria. This year she was one of the hosts for the Eurovision Song Contest viewed by over 200 million people worldwide. Welcome to our Power List.
Arlette Bomahou – Sports – Ireland
Arlette Bomahou has two World champion titles and is two-time European Champion title in power lifting in 2013 and 2014. She has been weight training for the past 10 years. In 2011 her personal trainer Adrian Quinn suggested she compete and she participated in her first competition in Cork in August 2013.
She has gone on to win the World champion title in Dusseldorf in 2014 where she broke the World record in division equipped deadlift with 162.5kg, and also picked up the Silver medal in unequipped deadlift with 167.5kg
Arlette has also won the European champion title in full power Championship in 2014 with Squats: 100 kg, Bench press: 57.5 kg and Deadlift at 165kg; the European champion title in single lift Championship in 2014 where she broke World record in equipped division with Deadlift at 175 kg, and the World Champion title in Glasgow in 2013 with Squats: 102.5 kg, Bench press: 62.5kg and Deadlift 160kg. Welcome to our Power List.
Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE – Arts – England
Chi-chi Nwanoku is the founder of the Chineke! Foundation that seeks to be a force for good in the classical music industry, levelling the playing field for young Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) music students, and helping to create a vibrant new generation of professional musicians of all colors.
The Chineke! Foundation has formed Europe’s first professional all-black orchestra.
She studied at the Royal Academy of Music and with Franco Petracchi in Rome, and soon found herself in demand internationally.
Chi-chi is Principal Double Bassist and co-founder of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. She is Professor of Double Bass Historical Studies at the Royal Academy of Music, and was made a Fellow there 1998.
Her range of musical interests has resulted in a broad career performing and recording in a diversity of styles from authentic baroque through to 21st century and new commissions, with many of Europe’s leading chamber orchestras and ensembles. Some of her notable chamber recordings include Schubert’s ‘Trout’ Quintet (recorded three times), and Octet, Beethoven Septet, Hummel Piano quintet and Boccherini Sonatas. Her solo recording of Dittersdorf and Vanhal Concertos with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra; Hyperion CD 67179 received critical acclaim.
Chi-chi was awarded an MBE for services to Music in the 2001 Queen’s Birthday honors. Welcome to our Power List.
Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock – Science – UK
Margaret Ebunoluwa “Maggie” Aderin-Pocock, MBE is an English space scientist. She is an Honorary Research Associate in University College London (UCL) Department of Physics and Astronomy. Since February 2014, she has co-presented the long-running astronomy TV program The Sky at Night.
She attended Imperial College London, earning a BSc in physics in 1990 and a doctorate in mechanical engineering in 1994. Her thesis was accepted in 1995, entitled “Interferometric Studies of Very Thin Lubricant Films in Concentrated Contacts”. This project involved development of an ultra-thin film measurement system (using spectroscopy and interferometry to the 2.5 nm level). This doctoral research involved improving the optical performance and the mechanical design of the system, as well as development of control and image processing software. Other techniques at the time could only operate to the micron level with much poorer resolution. This development work resulted in the instrument being sold by an Imperial College spin-off company.
Aderin-Pocock is committed to inspiring new generations of astronauts, engineers and scientists and she has spoken to about 25,000 children, many of them at inner-city schools telling them how and why she is a scientist, busting myths about careers, class and gender. Through this Aderin-Pocock conducts “Tours of the Universe”, a scheme she set up to engage school children and adults around the world in the wonders of space. She also helps encourage scientific endeavors of young people by being a celebrity judge at the National Science + Engineering Competition. The finals of this competition are held at The Big Bang Fair in March each year to reward young people who have achieved excellence in a science, technology, engineering or mathematics project.
She has won numerous awards including 2013 UK Power List, most influential black people; 2013 Yale University Centre for Dyslexia “Out of the box thinking award”; 2011 Winner of the “New Talent” award from the WFTV (Women in Film and Television); 2010 Awarded Honorary fellowship from the British Science Association; 2010 Awarded third STFC Fellowship in Science in Society, held at UCL, and 2009 Winner of Red Magazine’s “Red’s Hot Women” Award in the pioneering category. Welcome to our Power List.
Dr Pierrette Herzberger-Fofana – Politics – Germany
Dr. Pierrette Herzberger-Fofana was a 2014 candidate in the EU Parliament with the Green Party. In the same year she was reelected to the position of City Counselor in Erlangen, Germany for the third time giving her a mandate from 2005 – 2020. She was the first black woman elected to a German Parliament.
She is the President of FORWARD Germany the Foundation for Research, Health and Development, Against Female Genital Mutilations and forced marriage in Europe and a Board Member of the Federation of Female Migrants Organization known as DAMIGRA. She was a 2013 Member of the Executive Committee Network of Female Migrants in Bavaria, Germany and since 2011 has been a Member of the Executive Committee of Higher Council of African Communities in Germany. From 1995-2006 she was a Member of the Executive Committee of AFARD & AAWORD and it’s Representative in Europe.
She is a multiple award winner including the 2014 African Women Award; 2014 Certificate of High Appreciation de IAC/CI-AF; 2009 Recipient of the Helene Weber Prize Award from the Federal German Ministry of Women, Aged Persons and Youth making her the first political women with an immigrant background to receive this distinction. In 2004 she was the first recipient of Pilgrim Gorée awarded for scientific publishing.
Dr. Herzberger-Fofana holds a Ph.D. in Romantics and Germanistics from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg and a Master’s Degree in in German socio-linguistics from the Maîtrise at Sorbonne. She is currently a Researcher at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany. Welcome to our Power List.
View the Power List on YouTube.
Let’s use our collective power to make a difference. Join the Black Women in Europe™ Kiva team.
Since 2013 the Black Women in Europe™ Kiva team has grown to 8 members and has provided $250 in loans. Kiva is a non-profit organization with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. Kiva lets individuals lend as little as $25 to help create opportunity around the world. Our collective efforts will make a difference to an individual, a group, and a community.
Let’s support women. You don’t have to wait to start giving as part of our team. Choose a project and click on the amount you would like to donate. Remember as little as $25 is all that is needed. You’ll be taken to your basket where you can select what lending team your loans should count towards. Beneath the “Count Towards Team” column, you’ll see a drop down box with Black Women in Europe™’s lending team listed. Click that box and select the Black Women in Europe™’s lending team and the loan to will count towards our team.
In April 2014 I was quoted in Pride Magazine (not a cover girl yet but I’m working on it) “Do Black Women Have To Leave The UK To Be Successful?” http://pridemagazine.com/
Unfortunately I cannot find a link to the full article online but here is an image from the print version. The piece looks at the high number of black women who leave the UK for overseas, in particular The USA to find success.
In the piece I was quite adamant that black women should really be focusing on their countries of origin for love and support, with so many opportunities across Africa and The Caribbean I could see why I said it. Whilst I still think, as members of the Diaspora black women should look to our countries of origin for support & opportunities, I must say that I am now more passionate than ever for Black women to be recognised in their birth countries or their countries of residence. As black women in UK and indeed across Europe struggle to be acknowledged the fight is tough but certainly worth fighting.
We do not live in a vacuum and deserve to be given the same opportunities as women from all backgrounds. We should not have to leave The UK to find success. It’s a challenge but if we all leave to go to The US who will be left to fight for the equality of future generations.
What do you think? Do Black Women Need To Leave The UK To Be Successful?
For self-made artist and soldier Horace Pippin— His ability to transform combat service into canvases of emotive power, psychological depth, and realism showed not only how he viewed the world but also his mastery as a painter. In Suffering and Sunset, Celeste-Marie Bernier painstakingly traces Pippin’s life story of art as a life story of war.
Illustrated with more than sixty photographs, including works in various mediums—many in full color—this is the first intellectual history and cultural biography of Pippin. Working from newly discovered archives and unpublished materials, Bernier provides an in-depth investigation into the artist’s development of an alternative visual and textual lexicon and sheds light on his work in its aesthetic, social, and political contexts.
For those who don’t know me, I’m the founder and organizer of the Oxford Pan-African Forum (OXPAF). I’ve been active in the movement for Black Lives in the UK and an active participant in the Race and Resistance seminar for the past 2 years. I am also a founding member of Rhodes Must Fall in Oxford, and it is in this latter capacity that I’m appealing to you now. On this Friday, 6th November at 12pm, we will demonstrate outside Oriel College, Oxford and present a petition demanding the statue of Cecil Rhodes – a brutal, racist colonial oppressor – be taken down.
6th November 2015, we will demonstrate outside Oriel College, Oxford to demand the glorifying statue of Cecil Rhodes – a brutal, racist colonial oppressor – be taken down.We will assemble in Oriel Square at 12pm. We want to make sure that those at Oriel College can’t ignore us, so make sure you arrive prepared to BRING THE NOISE: come armed with whistles, drums, pots, pans, wooden spoons and your loudest chanting voice. We will give the Oriel College Provost until to come out and publicly accept our petition (which can be found and signed here: http://chn.ge/1WkcooW).
The veneration of a racist murderer on our campus violates the university’s own commitment to “fostering an inclusive culture” for its black and minority ethnic students. It is also an overbearing, visual reminder of the colonial apologism rife in one of the world’s most esteemed educational institutions. So long as these statues are allowed to stand, we as a society can never begin the process of recognising the violence of our past.Cecil Rhodes: your time has come. You must fall. You will fall.