Tuesday 20 March 2012

Movin' On Up - It's Official!

Take a look at the details of our new campaign here (including a brilliant animation of the microbus passing through a stereotypical Welsh landscape) and decide which of the events and challenges you would like to participate in - full list here.

This is surely going to be our biggest and best campaign to date - and definitely the most active and healthy. I'm looking forward to limbering up by scaling Pen y Fan in May and then, hopefully fully fit after an active summer, shimmying up Snowdon in late September.

The Snowdon climb is quite a bit more challenging. It's the higher mountain of course but also because the route we are using on Pen y Fan starts half way up near Storey Arms on the A470 - should be straightforward for most people with basic fitness and the proper kit (which we will be giving clear advice about).

Just to prove I can do it here's me atop Pen y Fan in September 2010...

...hmm, looking quite a lot fitter than I do now, on reflection, but I did climb it then from the abandoned army camp near Brecon which is a lot further and a little treacherous as you have to scurry up the rocky north face - no such problems on the route we have chosen for you, however.

Oh, and this all has a serious purpose of course. As part of the “Movin’ On Up” campaign service users and their families will:

• Engage in the development and implementation of the new Mental Health Strategy ensuring that it is recovery-focused, empowers service users and their families, and supports the Mental Health Measure by prescribing the services which individual Care and Treatment Plans demand.

• Take full advantage of the Mental Health Measure which promotes holistic care and treatment planning. The campaign will see service users taking the lead in negotiating robust Care and Treatment Plans which address all areas of life. Service users and their carers will challenge mental health and other services to deliver on the new law by acting on the Care and Treatment Plans in collaboration with their clients. They will also challenge the Welsh Government, NHS and local authorities to ensure that resources for mental health and other services are focused on meeting needs identified in the Care and Treatment Plans.

• Ensure that the families and carers of people with a serious mental illness are able to exercise their rights under the new Carers’ Measure and Mental Health Measure so that they can support the people they care for on their path to recovery – and achieve a better life themselves.

• Promote the take-up of other opportunities provided by the new Mental Health Measure for improved primary care services (including mental health assessments, short-term interventions and onward referral to secondary services), for an expanded scheme of independent mental health advocacy for all in-patients, and for improved and faster re-access rights for those who have been discharged from secondary services.

Join us this summer and have fun getting fit - and changing the world!

Postcript: I've just found this pic of me on the way down from Snowdon in 2009. You will have to take my word for it that I actually made it to the top (and without using the train)...