Thursday 12 April 2012

"Movin' " Gathers Pace

Last call for people interested in our Seminar which service users and carers are running in Llandrindod on 17 May 2012 with the aim of developing their continuing dialogue with senior policy makers and providers of mental health services. The Seminar is a key part of "Movin' On Up" which aims to take service users' and carers' campaigning for excellent mental health services in Wales to the next level.

Jackie James, Hafal's Carers Lead, tells me: "Last year's "Taking the Wheel" Seminar brought mental health professionals and service users together to explore how people in Wales receiving secondary mental health services could take control of their lives and the services they receive.

"This year's Seminar goes a step further: service users and carers now want to take the discussion to a new level and explore ways in which they can maximise the opportunities provided by the Mental Health Measure, the Carers Measure and the Welsh Government's new Mental Health Strategy. It will be a ground-breaking event and we expect to generate some challenging and progressive ideas."

Bringing together service users, carers, health professionals, commissioners and policy makers the Seminar will explore ways in which service users and carers can:

• 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 Seminar will look at the ways in which service users can take the lead in negotiating robust Care and Treatment Plans which address all areas of life.

• 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.

The “Movin’ On Up” Seminar, which is supported by Hafal with help from our friends in Bipolar UK and the Mental Health Foundation, takes place at the Media Resource Centre in Llandrindod Wells. The Seminar is mainly by invitation but there are a few additional places available – if you are interested, you can apply by completing a booking form and returning it to Emma Billings all via this link.

The Seminar is just one event in a summer-long itinerary of "Movin’ On Up" activities including: 22 weekly county events covering the whole of Wales; a Pen y Fan climb on 11 May; an interactive stand at the Royal Welsh Show in July; a Snowdon climb on 28 September; and a display at the National Assembly on World Mental Health Day in October.