SUC development money award November 2011

At the beginning of the month we offered £50 development money to a service user working in involvement, to assist them in carrying out their work for the Trust. We received one application, from Gill Ashwood.

Gill asked for the money to buy a printer.

Gill works as a volunteer receptionist at 111 Denmark Hill 2 days a week. She also worked in a paid capacity as the interim facilitator for a Service User Group, as well as being active in her own SUG. She is also a key member working on the Recruitment and Selection Training project.

She also works with SUITE on combating stigma and service user perspectives, and is working with a member of SLaM staff on their dissertation.

Congratulations, Gill!

PSUIG Service User involvement award 2011

TWIG Ops was delighted to be invited to consider applications for PSUIG’s second annual psychology service user involvement award.

A panel comprising 3 service users, one of whom is also a carer, and one member of SLaM staff, who is also an ex-service user, considered 8 applications.

Despite significant advances in user involvement in SLaM in recent years we found real variance in the quality of applications, and we found that many applications conflated “participation” with “involvement”, in part or in whole.

In our judging, we have tried to remain true to the real ethos of service user involvement, which we believe was our remit.

We marked against 4 prescribed criteria:

  • the extent to which the project contributed to service improvement
  • the degree to which service users were involved in all aspects of the project
  • the method and robustness of methodology by which the project was evaluated, and
  • the degree of innovation of the project and the degree to which service users were involved in a creative way.

We recommend that in future years service users are also involved in drawing up the criteria, as some of the criteria we found confusing, particularly the last one. For this exercise, we referred back to the title of the award, which was about service user involvement.

We marked each application out of 10 against each of these 4 criteria.

We awarded the 8 applications overall marks of between 4 and 39 out of 40. Confidential detailed feedback from the panel to each application is available via Joe Oliver.

For us, two applications stood out, and they scored 37 and 39 marks respectively.

Both demonstrated a real commitment to involvement through a continuous loop of feedback and service changes and improvements, and both demonstrated where feedback had already led to changes in provision. Both included qualitative and quantative feedback and had robust methods for on-going evaluation of, and acting on this on-going feedback.

Both demonstrated a fundamental understanding of and commitment to involving service users in service provision.

What tipped the balance for us was that one project’s starting point was to run a focus group asking their service users what was important to them in its service and the other first developed a pilot project.

We therefore highly commend the National and Specialist CAMHS project “coping with unusual experiences for children study”, which has embedded a high level of service user and carer involvement in the design of feedback and continuous improvement into its therapeutic process, as well as providing a completely new service which could change the lives of many young people, potentially diverting them away from a lifetime of revolving door engagement with secondary services.

The winning application demonstrated an entire involvement pathway which used ex-service users of its services as peer supporters to encourage early engagement of first time users of the service, from initial referral, through treatment, to becoming a peer supporter, supporting new service users through the treatment process and well beyond. The project also demonstrated good use of exploiting new technologies to encourage engagement with their services, and to support other lifestyle changes and engagements, which would significantly benefit this group of service users (and thence the Trust).

We thought that this project involved service users from its inception, and also gave a real legacy that service users, following discharge, could have a meaningful and key role (paid and as volunteers) in supporting others through the process of treatment and well beyond the specific treatments that the Trust offers, for a client group with significant engagement issues.

We see this as real empowerment: the highest form of service user involvement.

We are delighted to award the 2011 Psychology Service User Involvement award to the Beresford project.

Pyschology Service User Involvement Newsletter Autumn 2011S

Please see the first PSUIG newsletter, here: PSUIG Newsletter Autumn 2011

Small Pills, Big Issue

Small Pills. Big Issue

Medication and Mental Health in Lambeth

Medication and mental health is at the centre of conversations we have day in, day out – from who gives it out, to who should take it. But are we having  the right conversations? Is the right support available?

With the right people in the room, we’re going to have a good think about what’s working, where we’re way off the mark and what needs to change from tomorrow.

When: Wednesday 30th November 2011, 4 – 7pm (incl. refreshments)

Who:     People who take medication. People who don’t. Including: People who use services, Carers, GPs, Psychiatrists, Care Coordinators, Nurses, Social/Health Care Workers, Commissioners, Support Workers, Managers.

Where: SMaRT Garage Services, Unit 9, Windsor Ctr, Windsor Grove, West Norwood, SE27 9NTa

Google Map:,-0.100272&hl=en&ll=51.429397,-0.099821&spn=0.007706,0.021136&num=1&vpsrc=0&t=m&z=16&iwloc=A

Getting there

The nearest train station is West Norwood overland and is a short 5 minute walk away. Buses numbered 432, 2, 196, 315,192, 468, 68, 689, 690 run close to the building. There is also limited on street car parking available

Book:   or  020 3049 4268

Powered by: the joined up thinking of the Lambeth Living Well Collaborative

twitter: @LiveWellLambeth          blog:

See the flyer here: Small Pills Big Issue _ Flyer

Solidarity in a Crisis

Solidarity in a Crisis is a service user and carer led service aiming to support people in crisis over the phone or in person during out-of-hours.

We are now recruiting people with lived experience of mental health distress to become out-of-hours crisis peer supporters.

Peer supporters will become part of a team that aims to support people in crisis using the empathy and knowledge they have gained through their lived experience. The peer supporter will receive innovative training and will meet like-minded people who want to help others. They will also be paid for this opportunity.

We are holding two recruitment sessions for people who are interested in finding out more about the service, and who would like to apply for the peer supporter role.

The recruitment sessions will be held at the Fanon Resource Centre -107 Railton Road,Brixton,SE24 0LRon:

Tuesday 22nd of November 2011 from 2 – 4pm

Friday 25th of November 2011 from 2 – 4pm

Please confirm your attendance to either one of the recruitment sessions by contacting Jessica Agudelo on 07795 037 320 or email

Empowering Family and Carers Event

December’s Main Themes include Welfare Benefits
& Support. Also talks with professionals about care and treatment as well as Peer Support
Taster session and information on workshops, welfare benefits & support services, medication, and lots… lots more.
Refreshments are also provided

View the flyer for the event CLICK HERE:Empowering Family-Carers Poster Dec 2011
For more detail and to find out about other future meetings which may be closer to you CLICK HERE:Empowering Family-Carers Sept 2011 – Other Info
To download a booking form in Microsoft Word Format CLICK HERE:Booking Form for December 2011
Simply return this form which you can complete at home to the email address at the bottom of this post.

When: Wednesday 7th December 2011
What time: 3. 15pm – 6 :30pm
Where:Ladywell Unit
Lewisham High Street
SE13 6LH
How do I get there? VIEW MAP:,-4.064941&sspn=13.313739,43.286133&vpsrc=0&hnear=London+SE13+6LH,+United+Kingdom&t=m&z=15

If you have any further questions or require information or simply wish to return your booking form for the event then please direct all correspondence to Email:

– Please note event open to ALL carers – staff wishing to attend must get in contact first.

Hear Us Xmas Party & Wellbeing Event

Come along to this fantastic Xmas & Wellbeing event with Hear Us!

When?: Tuesday 6th December
What time?: 1.30pm Onwards
82 London Road Croydon,

View the flyer for this event CLICK HERE:Hear Us Xmas Party Wellbeing Event

What’s on the menu?:

• Relaxation Room – Massages, Reflexology, Yoga, Manicures
• Activities – Crystal Palace Football Coach, Boxercise
• Live Music, DJ, Talent Show, Poetry Reading and more…….
• Festive Food & Drink (no alcohol)
• Social Inclusion Information stands
• Wellbeing and Healthy Living Stalls
• Raffle Prizes
• Music from ‘Jules Phoenix and Remi F’ & The Irregulars

Hear Us would like to invite service users, carers, staff (within mental health) and also interested members of the public to join in on this day.
The event is completely FREE to anyone with an interest in mental health and wellbeing.

For contact details for booking a place see this flyer CLICK HERE:HEAR US XMAS POSTER
Or see below:
Tel: 020 8681 6888 Email:


Monthly Saturday Information Sessions For Mental Health Carers

Would you like more information and support to help you in caring for someone with mental health needs?

View the flyer for this initiative CLICK HERE:Sutton Carers – Monthly Saturday Information Sessions Nov & Dec 2011

  • Come to Sutton Carers Centre monthly information sessions, each with a focus on a
    particular topic.
  • You will also be able to share ideas and information with other carers.Where?:
    Sutton Carers Centre,
    12-14 Benhill Avenue,
    SM1 4DA.
    Map: for?:
    For family and friends who care for someone with mental health needsWhen?:
    1 Saturday per month, 11am-1pm, on the following dates:
    Date / Topic?:
    – 12th November Medication. A pharmacist will be speaking and answering questions
    about medication for mental health.
    – 10th December Coping with Major Festivities. Cath Gamble from South West
    London & St. Georges NHS Trust will be discussing tips for
    coping with major festivities.If you are interested in coming then contact Celia Johnson for more information
    Sutton Carers Centre
    Benhill House
    12-14 Benhill Avenue
    Sutton, SM1 4DA
    Tel: 020 8296 5611

Mental Health & Justice Research Project

Do you want to help Mind and Victim Support to influence change?

Mind’s research has shown that people with mental health problems are more likely to be victims of crime and also face significant barriers to reporting crime and accessing justice.
Mind and Victim Support are carrying out some new research in London, with a number of leading London Universities, to explore the rate of victimisation among people with mental health problems, understand their experiences in more detail and look at how things can be improved.
Findings from the research will be used to improve policy and practice in agencies involved in the Criminal Justice System, such as the Police, the Crown Prosecution Service and the Courts.

View the flyer for this initiative CLICK HERE:Have You Ever Been the Victim of a Crime

Victim Support will be interviewing people across London to find out about their experiences of being a victim of crime. The interviews will focus on exploring the actions people take and support they gain after being a victim of crime and also identifying and understanding the barriers people with mental health problems face in gaining justice. People that take part in an interview will also be asked to share ideas and make suggestions for how things could be improved.

Candidates are being sought who are:

• Aged over 18 years
• Have been a victim of crime in the last 3 years
• Experience mental health problems
• Live in London

The information you share during the interview will remain anonymous and you will receive £20 for your time. Interviews will be held at your local Mind office or at a Victim Support Office that is close to where you live. This means you won’t have to travel far to take part. We will also pay any travel expenses related to attending the interview.

To find out more, please contact Sian Greenhead at Victim Support
Email: via or Tel: 020 7268 0222

More information is available on the Victim Support website:

To view more information about the interview / process CLICK HERE:MHJP Interview Information Sheet


Soundboard – A music therapy group for Southwark

Fantastic ongoing music therapy group Southwark residents with mental health concerns.

View the graphic poster for this Event CLICK HERE:Soundboard Poster

What days?: Mondays
What time?: 3-4 pm
Copleston Centre
Copleston Road
SE15 4AN

View the detailed leaflet for this Event CLICK HERE:Soundboard Leaflet

For more information about Soundboard please contact:
Marcela Vielman
Tel: 020 7732 5880 Email:


Hope and Recovery Project (HaRP) – Service User Trainers

Service User Trainers

Are you interested in delivering recovery training for staff working in SLaM?

The Hope and Recovery Project is seeking to recruit service users to do joint training for its recovery training project.

View the flyer for this opportunity to find out more about the project, requirements & what’s on offer CLICK HERE: HaRP – Service Users Trainers

HaRP will be recruiting a maximum of 10 service users. Each will be given an opportunity to deliver up to 8 full days each over a 18 month period. Payments will be through the involvement register or invoices for self employed trainers. This will be discussed further at interview.

HaRP will also be running a 5 day training for trainers course. Successful applicant will be required to commit to attending all days. This will run on 5th, 6th, 9th, 10th and 11th Jan 2012. Lots more info in the flyer above!

If you are interested in being a part of HaRP and delivering this kind of training then you should write to or email Mark Dalgarno covering the below three points:
1. Why you are interested in being a part of HaRP?
2. What experience you have in delivering training?
3. What experience you have around recovery?

Or in writing to:
Bishopsgate Training Centre
Bethlem Royal Hospital
Monks Orchard Road

Service User Consultant development money

The nightline audit also won 3rd prize in the Kings Health Partners Clinical Audit Awards 2011, out of 80 entries.

We were awarded £50.

What could you do with that money that would help your work within SLaM as a service user consultant?

Is there an event you would like to attend? We could pay for travel and / or registration.

Is there a book you would like to buy?

If you are a volunteer, you are especially encouraged to apply, although we cannot pay you for work you do as a volunteer.

Anything would be considered.

Please send no more than 100 words to  setting out what you would do with it and how it would benefit service user involvement in SLaM.

Please reply before 3oth November 2011.

SLaM UNISON staff strike on 30th November

Dear Service User Consultant colleagues,

Your SLaM staff colleagues are intending to take strike action on 30th November with other public sector workers across the UK, over government attacks on public sector pensions. This day of action is backed by the TUC, amongst others. This could possibly be the biggest strike in the UK since 1926 (when there was a General Strike).

This is just one more part of the resistance against the terrible ConDem cuts which of course include attacks on our incapacity and other benefits, with more to come, including a “review” of DLA already announced, as well as attacks on old age pensions which will affect us all. In Cameron’s words, I hope you would agree that in this respect, we (SLaM staff and service user consultants) are indeed “all in it together”.

There is no doubt that we are all faced with the impact of the cuts directed by the Coalition goverment to save money, having bailed out the banks’ irresposible actions with our money, and while continuing award huge contracts to ATOS (who are conducting the IR to ESA assessments) and other private companies working in the health service, many of whom have been major donors to the Conservative party.

We urge you to decline any work you are offered on 30th November, making it clear that you are “on strike” in support of your UNISON colleagues. Please also don’t cross any picket lines.

In solidarity,

D Rosier (Service User Consultant Co-Chair, TWIG Ops, personal capacity)

Vanessa Bray (Service User Consultant Vice Co-Chair, TWIG Ops, personal capacity)

Liz Dalton (SUC, Arts Strategy Project p/c)

Bridget Jones (SUC, Food Project, p/c)

Stefano Perera (SUC, SUITE & Psychosis SUAG, p/c)

Please feel free to add your name in support 🙂

Training Session – Confidentiality & Information Security

Calling all service user and carer consultants!

In your work as a service user or carer consultant, you may come across sensitive information. SLaM has clear guidelines and policies about how this type of information should be handled.
This session will give you peace of mind in your work and allow you to feel confident that you know how to follow procedures which could enhance your chances of finding work!

View the flyer for this event CLICK HERE:Confidentiality Training Session

When?: Tuesday 22nd November 2011
What Time?: 10.00 – 12.00
Where?: Maudsley Hospital
Denmark Hill

This training session is unpaid.
All participants will receive a certificate of attendance.


Info & Discussion – Changes to Community Psychological Therapies Services

Come along to this valuable Service users & carers – Info & Discussion meeting

Across the boroughs of Southwark, Lambeth & Lewisham, there will be some changes to how psychological therapies are provided. If you would like to find out what the proposed changes are and to give your feedback on them, please come along to this informal session

View the flyer for this event CLICK HERE:Changes To Community Psychological Therapies Services

When?: Monday 21st November 2011
What Time?: 10.00 – 12.00
Where?: Maudsley Hospital
Denmark Hill

To book a place and get details of the venue, please contact:
Alice Glover
Tel: 020 3228 0959 or Email:

If you are unable to come to the meeting but would still like to know more, please contact Alice Glover (details above)