Comment from author and Hikoi participant, Annie Chapman

"The weeks flowed by: I was interviewed by Sheldon Brown about my intention to Hikoi, on “Take It from Us” the radio programme devoted to mental health matters, run by those with lived experience. Sheldon sent me through some questions to consider, which I did with great trepidation, never having been interviewed about anything in my life before. I set myself up with my laptop in front of me with all I had written in response to his pre-questions, and a photo of my spiritual Master to remind me to simply be authentic.  Sheldon was a brilliantly engaging and sensitive interviewer. I was completely astonished to discover that my answers flowed from a place that knew nothing of self-consciousness, with the natural authority of a human being who has been genuinely affected by something.

"I have another radio interview with “Take it from Us. This time I’m interviewed by James, who, despite obviously still being challenged by ongoing unwellness and overmedication, runs a wonderfully penetrating, intelligent interview. I find it deeply touching and want to shout from the rooftops how necessary it is for society to nurture and protect human dignity, to enable those who have experienced distress and great hardship to re-connect with their talents."

Leanne Kirton, project manager,, Northern Regional Alliance

"Thanks Sheldon for being a lovely host and guiding me through the interview process. "

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From AIDS ambassador Sophie Jawardene:

"This was my first ever interview of any kind. I had not thought I will ever meet people like this guy. The core of this post is where I was at in life. I have heard young people say Fresh, or fresh from the boat. I was fresh from the sunken ship that had just been pulled out of the deep seas. And Sheldon seemed to read that and concentrated on the subject in hand. What I know is he had an understanding of how one can be discriminated, maybe because one can't speak the language or because I am not always sure what one should say but knowing what one wants to say. He made it all easy for my first day of HIV and fame,  LOL."

Anne Helm on hospital procedures that accentuate stigma

"Sheldon: I penned a response to you after I heard the broadcast. I was really thrilled with that programme and James King’s input was wonderful. Plus the 6 million bicycles in Beijing song I loved.

"I appreciated  James perspective on ECT: I occupy the same position, even though in the old days I experienced it quite differently."

Dr Sarah Gordon, PhD, MBHL, LLB, BSc

Hi Sheldon

"Thank you very much for inviting me and having me on your programme. I was very nervous but enjoyed it and my husband was very impressed - so that is always good. I am happy to download the interview, thanks. I really appreciated the chance to promote the research particularly and have had a couple of inquiries as a result so that is good.

"Once again, thanks very much for the opportunity."




Dr Sarah Gordon, PhD, MBHL, LLB, BSc

Department of Psychological Medicine

School of Medicine and Health Sciences

University of Otago

Troy Manley, Whariki, Recovery Solutions

"It will be great seeing you...listened to a few of your interviews and found them entertaining, informative and down right ‘o’ for awesome...keep up the awesome work."

Suicide Prevention Information Service

It was good to talk to you today about Common Ground – thanks for making the time, and sharing our new initiative with your listeners.

From consumer Debbie:

Hey Sheldon, I am now a regular listener of your radio show. That was a very good sharing from Haydee of how she overcame the issues of addictions, of drugs and gambling. Another success story that will give people a great sense of Hope! Well done, Sheldon for the good work that you are doing.

Peer trainer, Gloria Whyte

Thank you for looking after my wellness in the process of the radio talk show and James it was great to meet him, and an experience l won’t forget.

Anne Helm

Subject: Compulsory treatment: how NZ is out of step

Excellent topic Sheldon. I recently presented at a symposium on mental health and Social Justice...and Tony O’Brien (the radio guest) was also presenting. It is important to review the MH Act urgently. I am so thrilled with the topics you pick Sheldon.

Keep up the good work.