Susan-Aliya Andrews-Howells was born in Birmingham and is now 62 years old. She started writing poetry when she was 25 years old, struck by the plight of the Polish people’s struggle against Russia.
After she was diagnosed with schizophrenia and always routing for the underdog she joined Capo (Campaign Against Psychiatric Oppression) founded by fellow survivors, the late Irwin and Frank Bangay, based in London.
Capo was a survivors self help group and also campaigned for better rights and conditions in psychiatric institutions. Frank Bangay was an inspiration, Allie and friend in this campaign for human rights.
When she was 27 years old, Susan-Aliya met a member of the Navy. This inspired a string of songs inspired by the Falklands war.
Susan-Aliya considers herself to be a survivor of the psychiatric system. An adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse and a survivor of homelessness. Her experiences are reflected in her songs, poetry and writing.