On 16-17th November, over 300 wellbeing professionals and enthusiasts gathered at the sumptious Merode Club in Brussels for Europe’s first Wellbeing Summit. NOW’s Patron, Satish Kumar, was a keynote speaker and our Director, Roger Higman, contributed to a workshop on community approaches to wellbeing. Here he recounts what went on.


Wellbeing inspires welldoing. That’s the key message of the Wellbeing Project, a co-creation of six globally-oriented institutions with an interest in social change. Using cutting edge research and high-profile international events, it is inspiring a culture of wellbeing amongst all changemakers and addressing key issues such as ecological belonging and intergenerational trauma.

This year, after the success of its first global Wellbeing Summit for social change, in 2022, the Wellbeing Project has worked with regional partners to host five ‘regional summits’ in New York, USA; Bogota in Colombia; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Dakar in Senegal and Brussels, Belgium. Each was different but each aimed to share a sense of what inner wellbeing is, why wellbeing inspires welldoing and to commit enthusiastically to advancing a culture of wellbeing in the social change sector.

I was fortunate to be invited to speak at a breakout session at the Brussels Summit. It was an inspirational experience and below, I share some pictures to give you an idea of what went on.

The Brussels Summit was organised by the Merode, a private social club and think tank, dedicated to driving positive social and environmental change.  The setting itself was a work of art.


Art, including performances of music (below) and dance (top) is seen as a universal language and was a prominent feature of the Summit.

Space was also given over to mindful and meditative activities…


… and embodied activities, including a dance workshop, a personal favourite.

NOW’s Patron, Satish Kumar, spoke forcefully on the importance of hope for activism…

… while I contributed to a breakout session on community action for wellbeing.

The food was simply amazing…

… and there was lots of time for networking.

Altogether, it was an amazing and inspiring event. In 2024, the Wellbeing Project aims to support up to 15 national summits around the world before hosting another global summit in 2025.

I would like to thank The Merode for permission to use these images which were created by Martin Pilette.