L’Estime is a space to care for the psycho-emotional and somatic consequences of trauma. We work across various areas, including health, the development of personal skills, empowerment, education and knowledge sharing. We place the body in the center of our interventions, from our individual sessions to our collective co-learning space, beginning with the assumption that each of us holds the key and the resources necessary to take care of ourselves and our health, to develop their potential and flourish in relation to their environment.
We envision bodywork as a space of flourishing, of social change and of the reinforcement of community ties, allowing for the flourishing of each person in their uniqueness. In their work, practitioners respect clients’ expertise of their own body, health and life. We anchor our methodology in a feminist framework, taking into account that systemic discrimination serves to marginalise and enact violence upon bodies based on their actual and/or perceived race, sex, gender, ability, age, etc. We therefore understand that as healthcare practitioners, we are not politically neutral and strive to assume this responsibility in every facet of our work. This framework allows us to question the psycho-emotional impact of discrimination and oppression on the body and, more generally, on our individual and collective health.
We aim to democratise access to non-medical healthcare by working with an equitable and sustainable economic model and by actively working so that each individual feels welcomed and recognised in their cultural identity, religion, gender, sexuality and ability. We are committed to making our activities financially, socially and culturally accessible.
The practitioners at L’Estime are trauma-informed and place consent and body positivity at the heart of their work.
- Improving the accessibility of non-medical health care for all through the development of alternative economic models, knowledge sharing and awareness raising as well as the creation of a resource center. This approach aims to create visibility towards the general public around the many ways in which we can care for ourselves.
- Advocating for somatic approaches and bodywork in general as support in the wake of trauma, as well as for a pedagogy of self-care that allows each of us to feel autonomous and competent in our own healing journey.
- Demystifying the boundary between health practitioner and patient by valorising knowledge exchange and recognising the expertise of those living with illness. Authorities do not exist when it comes to our own bodies.
- Creating a network of care that brings together healthcare practitioners from diverse fields striving towards liberation, with the hope of increasing our work’s reach across the Brussels region and beyond.
♦ Clients of our services deserve respect and dignity and a service that is as safe, accessible and healing as we can provide.
♦ We work to reduce the hierarchies of client and service provider/therapist/expert and we recognise that even this language can itself reinforce power dynamics. We work to find new forms of language that better express the work we want to provide.
♦ Our clients are the experts in their own experience and their own healing. We work to assist them in (re)discovering this and to building their capacity for self-care.
♦ We stand against discrimination based on race, class, age, ability, sexuality, gender and all other double standards. We commit ourselves to an education process around these issues so we can make this stand as well as possible.
♦ We know that to be sustainable, healing must be wider than an individual process and within our capacities, we align ourselves with struggles to end such oppressions.
♦ As workers, we want our work to be dignified and sustainable for ourselves as well as our clients. To this end, we look for ways to support each other and will explore economic models that help us achieve our goals without an overemphasis on either profit or self-sacrifice.