Our Story :
“We believe that everyone should have a second chance, that everyone deserves to be in a loving environment that is non-judgemental, and everyone should have some fun”
“Our Granny Nora lived in a lovely old house called “Scotswood” from 1955-2004 in a pretty village in Surrey, England called Shamley Green. It had a huge Scotswood tree in the garden. We only ever knew Granny to be in this house, and this place to be like home. Granny Nora loved her family fiercely and lived her life fully and actively until the ripe old age of 103!
We emigrated from the UK to Cape Town in 1972 with our parents, and believe that we brought with us a tenacity from Granny Nora; and over the years we learnt a ‘Go for It’ attitude from our mother who sadly we lost to cancer in 1990 when we were both very young”.
Louisa tested the very boundaries of life and lived fully, trying all things illegal & frowned upon as well as running businesses and always landing on her feet. Julia watched with a mixture of despair and admiration, but what always rooted these two was their ability to see the funny side, and their love for a home and creating which they got from their mother. And when they laughed, they always cried.
Louisa had always had a dream of starting a sober living home. Of creating a safe space that she couldn’t find for herself when she came out of treatment. A real home. A loving environment which was not only beautiful, but fun, light and supportive. In 2016 she approached Julia – as they shared the idea of wanting to make a difference and together they decided to ‘Go for It’. Scotswood Retreat was born.
“After just one year in rented premises, we moved to our own magnificent ‘Weltevreden Manor House’ in Lakeside, circa 1795. We knocked out, painted, furnished and flirted with ideas to create this special home which emanates our heritage – the history, the love and the dream of the Scotswood in Shamley-Green.
We are two crazy sisters & co-founders, full of love for each other, and a need to make a difference in the world…..we have created Scotswood Retreat for people who won’t give up. For people who want something better for themselves, for people who are brave enough to just Go for It”.
“The final product is a place of acceptance and healing. And a home we love. And we hope you will too”
Meet the Scotswood Team :
Julia and has been touched by addiction her whole life by family members who are recovering addicts and was inspired when Louisa approached her to start Scotswood Retreat. This was an opportunity to solve the problems she had experienced in the past with trying to get her own family members into an affordable, supportive, warm home-from-home facility that would increase their chances of staying clean. Julia has had many years experience in running her own businesses, has been named a Finalist in the Entrepreneur Category of the Business Woman’s Association, and is a Member of the Entrepreneur’s Organisation. But more importantly, she is proud to be involved in a business that truly makes a difference.
House Manager & Facilitator
Louisa has a complete understanding of the challenges recovering addicts face on a daily basis, being a recovering addict herself. She is 100% committed to not only guiding the guests at Scotswood Retreat to successfully living an addiction-free life, but to live that life herself through example.
Louisa is the ‘Mother Hen’ of Scotswood and cares for the guests like they are all her children. She lives on the property full time and manages the house and facilitates all running operations. Caring and compassionate, she is truly passionate about Scotswood Retreat being a comfortable, safe, fun, happy and supportive home for our guests. Louisa also offers daily counselling as she is a registered Counsellor, as well as practical support in finding jobs, volunteer work, and finding your passions.
Addictions Counsellor & Recovery Assistant
In 2016 Inshaaf joined our team and quickly proved herself as an invaluable asset to all of our guests – they love her as she has a lovely positive disposition – she is a shining example of what hard work through the recovery program can achieve. Inshaaf has done recovery assistant training as well as being a registered counsellor and offers one-on-one sessions to our out-patients.
Inshaaf is positive and inspirational. She has been clean for 4+ years and works the 12 step program religiously. She has extensive experience in Eating Disorders, having suffered with this herself. Her experience with ED has taught her that no stone should be left unturned when it comes to process addictions as they are the silent killers. She also has a deep understanding of Biploar disorder and knows that it is a difficult time to adjust and for some, to even accept that they have a mental condition. We are proud to have Inshaaf as part of our team as she can offer our guests support through experience and understanding. She brings light & laughter to our guests, whilst being firm and holding them to their commitments.
Closed Group Sex Addiction Therapist
Corrie has been working in the field of addiction, co-dependency and trauma on both an in-patient and out-patient basis since 1982. In recent years Corrie’s focus has shifted to cater for the growing need for treatment of people suffering from sexual compulsions. She obtained a Masters degree in Clinical Social Work at the University of Cape Town and was also the first Certified Sex Addictions Therapist (CSAT) registered with the International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals (IITAP) in South Africa . She trained under Dr Patrick Carnes and Dr Ken Adams in the United States and is currently one of two such qualified therapists in the country. Corrie is warm, down to earth and loving combined with firm, ‘real’ and accessible. We are proud to have Corrie as part of our Scotswood team of professionals. Corrie is available for one-on-one sessions with our guests at an extra fee.
Relapse Prevention Counsellor
Lee has over 11 years experience in the field of addiction from both the counsellor and a recovery aspect. Lee has worked as a counsellor at the top addiction centres in the Western Cape and has been in recovery herself using the 12 step program. Lee also has siblings in recovery – hence has the additional understanding of being a family member affected by this disease. Lee brings to the Scotswood Relapse Prevention groups compassion and an honest pragmatism. Lee facilitates mindfulness meditation (practical and theory) as well as individual counselling for families and loved ones. She has loads of energy, enjoys nature and in particular hiking.
“Mindfulness is my passion and I strive to share with others what has worked for me in the mindfulness practice. ‘ Knowing what is happening while it is happening and without judgement’ is my motto and a very effective relapse prevention tool. If we have awareness of what we are thinking and feeling, we can take the correct recovery action”.
Arina is not only our ‘money’ lady, she comes with the understanding of being a recovering addict herself, bringing compassion mixed with supreme control of the finances to the mix. Arina is a detail lady and so nothing slips by unnoticed. She is involved in the overall management and always provides a wise and logical perspective on things. Arina is your go-to person if you have any financial queries.
You can contact Arina on :
Alex was able to bring himself back from the dark place that the disease of addiction had taken him and now has 4 years of recovery behind him.
Alex used the 12 step program to change the behaviours that had for so long been destroying his life and relationships and is now able to give that gift back to others. Alex brings positivity, a new outlook on life and hope to everyone he meets and is a valued member of our Scotswood team.
Matthew de Smidt
Matthew is a warm and gentle soul who emanates wisdom based on his life experiences. Matthew is 2+ years clean and as a parent in recovery, he has lots of guidance to offer our guests in this area. He is an extremely active literature service member in the fellowship of NA and is literally a walking encyclopaedia of the 12 step program and traditions. He has a silly, dry sense of humour which creates an atmosphere of fun and laughter. Being of service is a purpose driven way of life for him now, which of course helps our guests tremendously at Scotswood.
Fred is our resident house-keeper. He fixes anything, makes beds, cleans, carries the guest’s bags, does guest’s laundry, and offers support – always with a ready smile and a willingness to help in any way he can. He has a lovely disposition which fits in perfectly with the energy we have in the house, and we are lucky to have him as part of our team.