Impact News

Responding to Violence, Suicide, Psychosis and Trauma

Mental Health Service User Involvement – Community Care 27.09.2007

Providence Row’s Mental Health Co-ordinator, Kelvin Barton, has been taking user-involvement to a new level. Usually user-involvement refers to increased levels of consultation and representation in decision-making processes. Sometimes users can “graduate” into helpers or even become staff. Many MIND groups even make their staff training sessions available to the more able of their service users.

Kelvin’s idea, however, is that the people who would benefit most from mental health training are the users themselves – not only do they have the greatest curiosity about their own condition, but they also have the greatest need to understand the issues faced by their service users. Kelvin invited us to deliver this training – professional training which cuts out the professionals and goes straight to the service users. This is a quite different concept to that of group therapy or self-help groups (e.g. Hearing Voices, Depressives Anonymous, etc.) and takes the copncept of empowerment to another level.

 So far there have been courses on “Experiencing Mental Health Issues”, “Anxiety and Depression”, and “Anger and Iritability.” Essentially these are the same courses that would have been delivered to professional groups except instead of giving advice on helping others, there is a much greater emphasis on self-help.

 The article appers in CommunityCare on 27th September 2007

Filed under: Impact Training, psychosis, Uncategorized, , , ,

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