Crisis What Crisis? podcast

30. Nimco Ali on the brutality of FGM, intimidation and Girl Power

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Our guest this week is Nimco Ali OBE.  A leading survivor activist, author and political strategist.  Born and raised in Manchester, at the age of six whilst on a trip to Somalia with her Grandparents, she found herself caught in the crossfire of a civil war.  Forced to flee and unable to return home, she was for a time a child refugee.  She found safety with her family but the following year, faced an altogether different trauma. Organised and encouraged by her own mother, Nimco underwent the brutality of FGM.   She later became seriously ill as a result of complications from that abuse. The mental scars continued for many years to come.  Despite this Nimco has become one of the world’s most powerful campaigners and activists against FGM – an act that still impacts many millions of women.
In this conversation, Nimco speaks impressively about how she managed the impact of her crises including the complex and fractured relationship with her mother and family. To this day she is subjected to intimidation and criticism for breaking the code of silence that too often exists around FGM.
In this podcast she talks powerfully about the methods she has deployed to survive and thrive including a sense of humour and a love of The Spice Girls.  Nimco is an extraordinary woman who, through her sheer force of personality and strength of mind, has brought about change in attitudes towards FGM here and abroad.

Nimco's Crisis Cures: 
1 – Humour – I find it in the people around me.
2 – An App called Pattern – it’s about star signs… I’ve become more connected with the idea that our life path is charted before our birth.  I’m a great believer in fate and destiny.  We assume we’re more important than we are, rather than being a grain of sand in a broader conversation.  I hold true to the idea that if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen.
3 - The Spice Girls – I believe they were fundamental to my activism – a group of women who took on the patriarchy in a different way.  I was once asked what my favourite quote was and I said  –  “If you want to be my lover, you got to get on with my friends”

Links:
https://www.thefivefoundation.org/

Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm 
Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk

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    32. Dr Richard Shepherd on a career immersed in crisis, his unravelling and why Brits are so bad at death

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    Dr Richard Shepherd (Dick) is an Expert Forensic Pathologist who has conducted over 20,000 post-mortems throughout his illustrious career. Many of these have been in the aftermath of some of the world’s most shocking disasters of recent times – including 9/11, the Clapham rail disaster, 7/7 and the death of Princess Diana.But in 2016 Dick suddenly struggled to separate his work and homelife, something he’d always prided himself on being able to do. It started with a panic attack whilst flying a light aircraft over the town of his first high profile assignment, Hungerford. And it culminated with the simple chink of ice in his wife’s gin and tonic – the moment which, as he says, snapped his links with reality and sent him back to the mortuary at the Bali bombings.Dick is brutally honest during our conversation, about his inability at that moment to carry on, and the dramatic unravelling that followed which led him to consider suicide. Thankfully, with the support of his wife, herself a doctor, and the help of counsellors, Dick made a full recovery and was able to return to his work. Now aged 69, his passion for pathology is as strong as ever. Dick has written two insightful and brilliant books which I urge you to read before the summer ends. They provide a detailed account of what it is to be pathologist and the critical role it plays for us all. Including the ‘inconvenient truths found during a post-mortem’, as Dick puts it, that have ensured justice has been done and answers provided to those who have lost loved ones.Richard’s Crisis Cures: 1. FLYING – It just has nothing to do with my day-to-day life. To climb into my little plane and take off into a blue sky over the coast to France for lunch. Intellectually it is interesting to learn but it’s the freedom and it is a very good clearer of minds.2. MUSIC – I love music of all types. I’m very broad-church. If I’m very stressed it’s Marriage of Figaro and Cosi Fan Tutti – Mozart. When I’m a bit grumpier, it’s the other end of the spectrum – and there’s always, Pink Floyd – Another Brick in the Wall.3. Reading – I’m not very good because I usually fall asleep. Holidays are when I read most. 100 years of solitude by Gabriel García Márquez. It’s a tremendous story – I can keep going back to it.The Seven Ages of Death by Dr Richard Shepherd is published on September 2nd, available from Waterstones athttps://www.waterstones.com/book/the-seven-ages-of-death/dr-richard-shepherd/9780241472033.The Unnatural Causes tour is starting on October 5th – find events at: https://drrichardshepherd.com/eventsUnnatural Causes – https://www.waterstones.com/book/unnatural-causes/dr-richard-shepherd//9781405923538?awaid=3787&utm_source=redbrain&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=css&gclid=Cj0KCQjw6s2IBhCnARIsAP8RfAhFD77vv-8_TcrwuKE3_tJMa7ZtWL8vaCFrSs7g72NroCVLpawPfUAaAnrtEALw_wcBStream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    31. SHORTCUTS - 15 minutes with author Henry Scowcroft

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    Henry Scowcroft is an award-winning science writer for Cancer Research UK.  In 2016, his girlfriend of six years, Zarah Harrison was diagnosed with an aggressive stage four tumour. After a short and brave battle she sadly passed away, with Henry by her side, just as he had been throughout her treatment. Struggling to cope and with a need to understand what had happened, Henry channelled his grief into writing ‘Cross Everything’ – a book which documents both his personal relationship with Zarah and her illness but also their struggle to understand and come to terms with her cancer.The result was a memoir and manual that has been described as the most emotional textbook you will read.In this shortcuts episode, Henry explains how, through his writing, he was able to provide a powerful legacy for Zarah – and a guide for others who face a similar challenge.  It is a detailed and deeply moving conversation about grief, making sense of the unfathomable nature of cancer and recovery. Henry's Crisis Cures: 1 – To carve out time for myself and make sure I’m looking after myself so I can be as helpful to the people around me as I can. 2 – Not getting caught up in the shoulda’ woulda’ coulda’ – there’s always a way to look back at the way you ended up in a situation you’re in and think, ‘if only I’d done X, if only I’d done Y, I wouldn’t be here.  But the fact is, you are where you are.  You’re here now.  Look forward, not backwards.  Focus on the horizon and not over your shoulder.3 – Music – Particularly the guitar which I’ve always loved playing.  I play in a band to this day.  I love listening to music – it’s so powerful at being able to get your head in a different space to where it is.  If you want to weep then music is incredibly good at taking you into that zone.  It was especially important when Zarah died.Crisis Track David Crosby – Traction in the Rain.Links: https://open.spotify.com/track/0qexU8674Ii6vaeFolN6Gb?si=f5d5685f69d24a80 https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/get-involved/donate?gclid=CjwKCAjwsNiIBhBdEiwAJK4kho_CgAZZPfqR3-9lrx5Uj4yHIq7rpM5_OYywkUil1oJdQSY5evX5YBoCD9AQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.dshttps://www.waterstones.com/book/cross-everything/henry-scowcroft//9781472975126?awaid=3787&utm_source=redbrain&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=css&gclid=CjwKCAjwsNiIBhBdEiwAJK4khvUwtzHi6mV-BwuhdV5oXJf9p_jYElCgIDUF8I72Xvjg3ENwn4OyoBoCDcMQAvD_BwEStream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    30. Nimco Ali on the brutality of FGM, intimidation and Girl Power

    1:02:43

    Our guest this week is Nimco Ali OBE.  A leading survivor activist, author and political strategist.  Born and raised in Manchester, at the age of six whilst on a trip to Somalia with her Grandparents, she found herself caught in the crossfire of a civil war.  Forced to flee and unable to return home, she was for a time a child refugee.  She found safety with her family but the following year, faced an altogether different trauma. Organised and encouraged by her own mother, Nimco underwent the brutality of FGM.   She later became seriously ill as a result of complications from that abuse. The mental scars continued for many years to come.  Despite this Nimco has become one of the world’s most powerful campaigners and activists against FGM – an act that still impacts many millions of women.In this conversation, Nimco speaks impressively about how she managed the impact of her crises including the complex and fractured relationship with her mother and family. To this day she is subjected to intimidation and criticism for breaking the code of silence that too often exists around FGM.In this podcast she talks powerfully about the methods she has deployed to survive and thrive including a sense of humour and a love of The Spice Girls.  Nimco is an extraordinary woman who, through her sheer force of personality and strength of mind, has brought about change in attitudes towards FGM here and abroad.Nimco's Crisis Cures: 1 – Humour – I find it in the people around me.2 – An App called Pattern – it’s about star signs… I’ve become more connected with the idea that our life path is charted before our birth.  I’m a great believer in fate and destiny.  We assume we’re more important than we are, rather than being a grain of sand in a broader conversation.  I hold true to the idea that if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen.3 - The Spice Girls – I believe they were fundamental to my activism – a group of women who took on the patriarchy in a different way.  I was once asked what my favourite quote was and I said  –  “If you want to be my lover, you got to get on with my friends”Links:https://www.thefivefoundation.org/Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    For our second Shortcuts episode, we are joined this week by former NFL athlete, Anthony Trucks. Anthony had an incredibly difficult start in life, given up by his mother at the age of three, he was placed into the US foster care system, where he was physically and mentally abused, tortured and starved. At the age of six he was finally placed into a loving family home and at 14 was adopted.Despite the stability, Anthony went dramatically off the rails as a teenager before football rescued him. He went on to play for three NFL teams but, after a career ending injury in 2008 and the death of his Mum he found himself battling severe depression.In this episode Anthony talks fluently and powerfully about how he took control of his life again – by coming to terms with his past, his failures and by focussing on compassion. He’s now a highly successful motivational speaker and creator of The Shift Method of personal development.Anthony’s Crisis Cures:1 – Reframing failure. We make it way worse than it actually is. If you can reframe the failure and find the lesson, you find a way to do better next time. It gives you hope to not have to face the same crisis again in the future.2 – Organisation. The reason a lot of us stay in crisis is we don’t know how to get out of it. We don’t want to take the wrong path, so we take no path. I bring everything down to earth and once I can see it, I can chart a path.3 – Action. Action ends suffering. We sit with emotional feelings with no action to change them. Feelings are born of actions and if you’ve taken an action that’s made you feel this way, the only cure is to take an action in opposition. That moment you don’t want to move, is the moment you must move and do something.Links:https://identityshiftbook.com/Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    28. Sebastian Coe on Olympic crises, integrity and a sense of the absurd

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    27. SHORTCUTS - 15 minutes with Squeeze's Chris Difford

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    26. Lorraine Pascale on rejection, the pity pool and making the mess your message

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    Scouted at the age of just 16 – Lorraine Pascale was the first black model to appear on the cover of US Elle magazine. She featured in the 1998 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue and was photographed by the late Corinne Day for The Face magazine with supermodel, Kate Moss. When the modelling career came to an end, she went on to new heights as a chef, an author and TV presenter, achieving success on both sides of the Atlantic.But her early life was a far cry from her later triumphs. Fostered shortly after her birth, then raised by a woman in the grip of alcohol addiction, she was once more put into the care system, only to endure long years of pain and hardship. Lorraine speaks candidly about this time and how meeting her birth mother much later on, left her convinced that she was a complication she didn’t want, or need in her life.Despite all of the childhood trauma, Lorraine is positive and demonstrates throughout why her no nonsense practical approach to problem solving has earned her the nickname of ‘Mrs Solution Focused’ amongst her friends.Lorraine’s Crisis Cures:1 – Exercise – that’s getting up and going to the gym. Getting on the treadmill and each day trying to beat the previous run. It gives you a great sense of achievement and gets the dopamine going.2 – Vivaldi’s Four Seasons – Spring – I have it on repeat. I find it very powerful. Music is a great cure…3 – Constant self-talk – Affirmations. I was dumped on the day my mum died – that’s a crisis. It was the only way I got through it. Things like, “You’re going to be okay, you’re great, you’ve got this…” – It sounds weird, but it really, really works. Links:Tact Fostering https://www.tactcare.org.uk/Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bm Some Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    25. Nick Bailey on being poisoned, losing everything and finding peace

    1:15:00

    Former Detective Nick Bailey’s life changed forever with the simple opening of a door. In March 2018, whilst searching the property of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, who’d earlier that day been found collapsed on a Salisbury park bench, Nick came into contact with the deadly nerve agent Novichok. The Salisbury Poisonings, as they came to be known, set off a chain of events which not only put Nick’s life in grave danger but also saw him and his family become collateral damage in an international incident.In this episode Nick talks us through those days of incredible drama and how, as he recovered physically, he faced the new challenge of losing his home, possessions and later the job he loved. This is a very human story of a life impacted by truly extraordinary events. Nick is open, candid and thoughtful about the poisonings and his battle to recover.Nick’s Crisis Cures:1 – Music – When I was in hospital, I couldn’t deal with anything. I was completely shut off. A friend of mine recommended that I listened to I Giorni’ by Ludovico Einaudi – It freed my mind. It made me smile, it made me cry. It was the most beautiful moment I had there. It means a huge amount to me.2 – Acts of Kindness. The support from the public was overwhelming. The generosity and gifts from people who didn’t want anything in return. We kept everything and still go through it now. We had an old lady offer us her TV after she heard we lost everything. For every negative, there were a thousand positives.3 – Running – it was a big thing for me. It didn’t fix anything, but I didn’t expect it to. Like I Giorni, it just freed up my mind. Then with the marathon I had the focus of raising money for Stars Appeal Charity at Salisbury District hospital (link below).Links:Charity – https://starsappeal.org/Public speaking – https://www.chartwellspeakers.com/speaker/nick-bailey/?event=eyJldmVudE5hbWUiOiJDbGlja2VkIiwiaW5kZXgiOiJ3cF9wb3N0c19zcGVha2VyX25hbWUiLCJvYmplY3RJRHMiOlsiMzUxNjgtMCJdLCJwb3NpdGlvbnMiOlsxXSwicXVlcnlJRCI6IjJmOWFkNDg3Yjk5YzNjYjAwYWFjYjQ1MTY5MjUwNzVlIn0=Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bmSome Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    24. Nick Allott OBE on bringing theatre back to life, grief and the art of recovery

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    Nick Allott OBE is one of Britain’s most successful theatre executives. For over 40 years he’s been at the forefront of some of the biggest West End and Broadway shows, including Oliver! Cats, Miss Saigon and Les Misérables. He was executive producer of the Oscar winning Les Mis film and was one of the team who brought Hamilton to London. Now as Vice Chairman of Cameron Macintosh, Nick has also led the fight to save theatre – an industry stricken by the pandemic. In this episode he talks in detail about his approach to crisis management. But he’s also candid about a life peppered with personal crises, from the loss of his father in a helicopter accident at 15, the subsequent devastating impact on his family, his own near-death experiences and how he has approached the impact of grief. Nick’s eloquence, honesty and humour provide a brilliant start to series 4.Nick's Crisis Cures:1 – Having a morning routine and sticking to it. My dog wakes me at up 7am. Cup of tea, then back to bed with the iPad to read all the papers. Then it’s back up for some vigorous exercise. Finally, to finish - a really cold shower and you’re set up for the day.2 – Cooking. I had to learn to cook as neither of the key partners in my life cooked – my kids all do, so I love it when we all collaborate to make something together. Half are vegetarian and half eat meat so it’s a big meal. Number one dish is an Asian curry.3 – Music. It’s underpinned my whole life. For me the best experience is live music. I really miss crowds. If I’m depressed or worried, I listen to a live recording. If I had to commit myself to one, it would be - Pink Floyd – Comfortably Numb. The first band I fell in love with. It never fails to thrill me. I cannot wait to get back into a room or field full of people. 4 – The one piece of theatre I could watch over and over again, and it would endlessly sustain me, would be the end of the first act of “Les Misérables” a song called ‘One Day More’.Links: The Theatre Artists Fund: https://theatreartists.fund/Comfortably Numb, Pink Floyd: https://music.apple.com/gb/album/comfortably-numb-live-at-knebworth-1990-2021-edit-single/1560394595Stream/Buy ‘Allies’ by Some Velvet Morning: https://ampl.ink/qp6bmSome Velvet Morning Website: www.somevelvetmorning.co.uk
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    Series Four trailer

    4:01

    In this fourth series of Crisis What Crisis, host Andy Coulson will be joined by an array of brilliant guests, all with extraordinary stories of crisis to share. From both a personal and professional perspective, all of our guests offer their wisdom and experience in an attempt to put together the ultimate crisis tool kit. This series also sees the launch of Crisis Shortcuts – shorter episodes that will sit alongside the longer podcasts, in which individuals tell us in their own words about their crises, and how they got through them.

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