Members' Manifesto 2017 launched
Our Members' Manifesto 2017 'Our voice, our vision, our values' draws on feedback from our AGM and members' event (June 2016), priority issues identified by members in our annual survey (2015) and responses from members to a direct request asking what should be in NSUN’s manifesto.
Participate in shaping NSUN - take our members' survey
We are seeking the views of members in order to evaluate our work and plan the coming year's priorities. Comments will remain anonymous. Your input is really valuable as it will help us to find out what we are doing well and identify the areas that we can improve on as an organisation. Your data will be stored until we have completed our annual evaluation work. We anticipate that this will be in August 2017.
We would like to thank you in advance
for taking the time time to complete this survey. It will take approximately 10 minutes.
Dublin based doctor Ivor Brown says
the drugs don't work. He would never prescribe antidepressants to anyone
Meanwhile psychologist Jay Watts says society's focus must shift towards valuing survivor experience
' Drug companies don t sell drugs, they sell lies about drugs
' says Dr Gotzsche who just published a paper about the topic
Support NSUN as you shop online
We are a registered cause on the Giving Machine site. This means people can choose to raise money for us when they shop online. Simply click on the
NSUN page then click the Join and Support this cause button. Donating this way does not increase the cost of your shopping.
Call for blogging contributors
Share experiences, suggestions and opinions with e-bulletin readers, website visitors and social media friends. To get an idea of the variety of topics and points of view, please visit our
blogs section. To send a blog, please email the editor.
Get introduced to NSUN in 3 Minutes
The three minutes video is here.
Important: non NSUN materials in the e-bulletin
Below NSUN news, features concern events, job opportunities, research, groups, etc, which are not ran by us, unless clearly stated. Details are sent to us by contacts who wish to spread word about their activities. Whenever possible we try to share materials which reflect the diversity (geographical and other) of an entire national network. We welcome suggestions and features by you, please email the editor
and the general info mailbox. Please remember that sharing is not endorsing.
Help with welfare claims and appeals
How to win a PIP appeal: This website
shares advice which could prove useful. We have not tested this resource but if anyone has please let us know.
WCA info: help for advisers assisting people to make a new claim for benefit on the basis of their incapacity for work, and in challenging decisions to refuse, or award a lower rate of, the benefit.
Disability rights publishes guide for people with newly acquired conditions
This guide contains advice / stories / resources concerning employment, education, welfare support and online resources.
Healthwatch Bolton and Healthwatch Wigan and Leigh are recruiting
- Senior Engagement Officers
- Senior Research Officers
Offered on 1 year Fixed – term contracts. 28-35 hours per week (negotiable) – salary range NJC pt 28-30 £24,964-£26,822, dependent on experience.
- Deadline: 6pm Tuesday 2 May
- Expected interview Dates: 11-12 May
For an application pack and contact email address: please visit the recruitment page.
North East together members meeting
NEt have published your invitation and papers for the next Member’s Meeting:
Date: Wednesday 30 April
Venue: Soup Kitchen, Holy Jesus Hospital, City Road Newcastle.
Time: The meeting starts at 1pm and there is a buffet lunch at 12.30pm
To download the documentation, please visit this page.
Mental Health Mates - walks and meet ups planned in several regions
The website Mental Health Mates
has announced meet ups to take place in several areas:
- Newcastle, April 22nd on 22nd Apr 2017 11:00:am
11AM, meeting at the entrance to exhibition park on Claremont Rd, Newcastle upon Tyne. Walk leader: Natalie (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Stoke, 23rd April on 23rd Apr 2017
Meeting at Westport Lake Visitors Centre, ST6 4RZ under the gold balloon Walk leader: Laurence - email@example.com
- Bognor Regis, 23rd April on 23rd Apr 2017
Meeting at Hotham Park Band Stand at 11am; Walk leader Emily, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Bristol – St George’s Park – 23rd April on 23rd Apr 2017
Meeting in the circular raised central area in-between the tennis courts and the children's park at 3pm Walk Leader: Hannah (08967 030467)
- Cwmcarn Forest Drive, South Wales, 30th April on 30th Apr 2017
Meeting at 10.30 by the Cafe area. Walk leader: Stacey Rees (email@example.com)
- London, Clapham, 30th April on 30th Apr 2017
Meeting at 11am at Clapham South Tube Station. Walk leader: Bryony
- St Albans, May 5th on 5th May 2017
Meeting at 10.30am at the Waffle House. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info
If you would like to set up an event in your area, email email@example.com for more information or use this contact page
Rochdale Boroughwide User Forum
RBUF have a variety of peer led groups and forum meetings.
Find out dates and venues here.
Details for the next Bi-monthly Forum are below.
Date: Thursday 27th April
Time: 10.30am - 1.30pm
Venue: St Andrews Church, Entwiste Road, Rochdale OL16 2HZ
Guest speakers include:
Michelle Warburton - CVR. Devo Manc
Sam Luczynski - Unison. Care Workers for Change
Debra Allcock - MacMillan. Care and Support
For more information telephone 01706 515720 or email.
You can also visit the RBUF website for more information.
Stepping Stones Summer Course Enrolment
Stepping Stones courses are for people living in Harrow who experience mental health issues. As well as learning different skills, taking a course can help you gain confidence and meet new people.
Enrolment for our Summer 2017
Date: Thursday 20th April
Venue: Harrow Baptist Church on College Road. You will be able to sign up for the following courses, which will take place from the end of April:
Mondays 10.30am to 12.30pm
Sketching and Painting
Wednesdays 10.30am to 12.30pm
Mondays and Wednesdays 2pm to 3pm
There is a £15 charge for these 10 week courses, £5 of which will be returned to you when you attend the final discussion session. You can download the course brochure for more information. For further information call Emily or Tracey on 020 8515 7879 or
email. You can also visit the Stepping Stones webpage
HOAX Our Right to Hope
HOAX Our Right to Hope is a pioneering project consisting of a trilogy of artworks telling the story of Rob, a young man who lived and died by suicide after living with psychosis for many years. Written by multi-award winning writer Ravi Thornton, who is Rob's sister, HOAX is touring the North of England April-May.
The project is a first of its kind, where the arts and health sectors have collaborated aiming to challenge stigma surrounding mental health and empower individuals who have lived experience of mental health difficulties.
The month long tour invites an audience of 5000 to enjoy a professional stage musical, take home a graphic
novel and interact with a narrative app - with the option to be a part of an NHS-Approved Stigma Study around Mental Health.
You can find out more about the upcoming dates and book tickets on the website or view the trailer.
GRIMSBY Central Hall, Duncombe Street, Grimsby, DN32 7EG Tuesday 18 – Saturday 22 April 2017 7pm, plus 2pm matinee Wednesday 19 April
LIVERPOOL Brigadier Philip Toosey Barracks, Aigburth Road, Aigburth, Liverpool L17 9PH Tuesday 25 – Friday 28 April 2017 7pm, plus 2pm matinee Wednesday 26 April
SALFORD The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays M50 3AZ Sunday 30 April – Monday 1 May 2017 7pm, plus 2pm matinee Monday 1 May
FEEL (Friends of East End Loonies) are hosting an event
Date: Friday 12 May
Time: 7 – 9 pm
Venue: Kingsley Hall, Powis Rd, E3 3HJ
Tube: Bromley by Bow – DLR: Bow Church – Buses: 8, 205, 25 (and others)
Dr. Joanna Moncrieff, Critical Psychiatrist and Author of The Myth of the Chemical Cure and The Bitterest Pill, will speak about her study, RADAR (Research into Antipsychotic Discontinuation And Reduction), now recruiting participants in East London http://bit.ly/2pdYlJ0 - followed by questions and answers.
Marian O’Brien, PIP: How to Survive the Benefits System. Marian is a Peer Support Trainer, member of Mental Health Resistance Network, Health Campaigner, and Survivor - followed by questions and answers.
No entrance fee but there will be a collection to cover costs.
Music by the Mudlarks. Tea and coffee.
FREE screening of the film "The Divide"
Date: Tuesday 16th May
Time: 7:30- 10:00 PM
The Gandhi Foundation, Friends of East End Loonies and the Kingsley Hall Community groups will be hosting the FREE screening of the film-documentary "The Divide". This will have English subtitled for D/deaf audience access.
There will be Q&A with Executive Producer Christopher Hird & Director Katharine Round and general discussion on how economic differences are affecting people's wellbeing in the present days, be them in whichever side of the spectrum.
You can book your FREE seat and find more info here.
The Maastricht Approach Centre Conferences and workshops
1st National Conference Celebrating the Opening of the Maastricht Appoach Centre.
The Maastricht Approach Centre is the first national project dedicated to helping people who hear voices to make sense of their experience and move forward in their lives. The Maastricht Interview Approach, is an innovative, recovery based intervention designed for those who hear voices, experience paranoia and irrational thoughts or beliefs.
The conferences introduce the first National Centre for the delivery and training of the Maastricht Approach and is a collaboration between Mind in Bradford, National Paranoia Network, and Bradford District Council.
Wednesday 14 June 2017 Add to Calendar
Time: 09:00 – 16:00
Location: Bradford Stadium, Valley Parade, Bradford, BD8 7DY View Map
Date: Friday 16 June 2017 Add to Calendar
Time: 09:00 – 16:00
Location: The Priory Rooms Meeting & Conference Centre, Quaker Meeting House, 40 Bull St, Birmingham, B4 6AF View Map
Each event costs £80. Book your place
Two Day CPD Workshop at Lancaster University
The Maastricht Interview: Social and biographical approaches to voice hearing - a lived experience perspective Lancaster Academy for Advanced Social Work
Dates: 13th & 14th July 2017
Cost: £200 for this two day workshop / £100 for students
Designed for professionals who are working in mental health and psychiatric services this workshop is facilitated by Peter Bullimore and Kate Crawford, two people with experience of voice hearing who are highly experienced in delivering training on this topic.
To register and book a place, follow this link.
For more details email Dawn Whitaker.
The Arches Project
is a place that offers a platform for creative talents of all disciplines to gain experience and exposure to become employable within their industry, by showcasing the work in an exciting and unique space within the Birmingham art scene.
They are currently seeking work for an exhibition called 'Reflected Realities', which aims to explore the differences between what people think and see. They are seeking work from artists who have experience of mental health distress and can therefore offer a unique perspective of their own reflected reality in a creative way in sculpture, installation, collage, mixed media, 3D and 2D work.
The deadline for submission is 21st April 2017
and the exhibition will run from 9th June.
Email Catherine Bell or visit the website for more information.
Source Gary O'Brien (Birmingham)
Positive Mental Health Group
The group is open to anyone with an interest in promoting a greater awareness of mental health issues across the communities of Birmingham and Solihull. Your chance to share information, news and views with statutory agencies, voluntary sector organisations, user groups - and individual users/carers/staff. This is one of the biggest mental health networking meetings in the Midlands, every month! Just turn up - no need to book.
Meetings include guest speakers, information table, light refreshments and a chance to chat and catch up.
25th April, 30th May, 27th June, 25th July, 29th August, 26th September, 31st October, 28th November, 19th December.
All meetings are from 2.30pm - 4.30pm
ALL MEETINGS ARE HELD AT - Matchbox Cafe, 38 - 40 Holloway Circus, Birmingham city centre B1 1EQ
New services in St Helens
Launching this April, these two services are commissioned by St Helens Council.
Who can access?
Vulnerable people, including older people and those mental health problems; physical or sensory impairments; and learning disabilities
St Helens Information and Advice Service
The Information and Advice Service will assist local people with a wide range of issues including benefits advice; accessing care and support; homelessness; and housing issues. The service will also signpost people to statutory, voluntary and community organisations, and enable individuals to make informed choices about their health and social care, empowering them to exercise choice and control.
Telephone: 01744 758034
Address: Millennium House, 10-12 Bickerstaffe Street, St Helens, WA10 1DH
St. Helens Advocacy Hub
From the 1st April the St Helens Advocacy Hub offers a Single Point of contact for all advocacy enquiries in the area. The Hub will provide information, signposting and 1:1 independent advocacy support for all Health and Social Care related issues. Advocacy aims to support people to explore choices and options, defend and promote their rights, speak out about issues that matter to them and ultimately, be involved in decisions about their lives
Telephone: 0300 303 0202 (calls to this number are charged at a local rate)
Address: Century House (Suite 6.4), Hardshaw Street, St Helens, WA10 1QW
Maternal Mental Health Alliance
The Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) is a coalition of UK organisations committed to improving the mental health and wellbeing of women and their children in pregnancy and the first postnatal year.
The MMHA currently comprises over eighty organisations, including professional bodies such as Royal Colleges and organisations that represent, or provide care and support to, parents and families.
Find out more on the
website and follow MMHA on Twitter @MMHAlliance
'Families Healing Together' offer critical look at the mental health system
New community 'Families healing together' offer course which look at the the mental health system from a critical perspective, and further, look at the causes and outcomes for people struggling with extreme states of distress that get labelled as “mental illnesses” with wide open minds, and broad holistic perspectives.
The courses are purposely facilitated by people who have recovered from being labelled with a psychiatric disorder, and who have both personal and professional experience with mental health.
The community's website will tell you more, from values to video testimonies and course material. The site includes a statement making it clear that contents have an educational purpose and are not intended as replacement for crisis support.
This site was mentioned to us in conversation. We have not tried any of the materials.
Self injury Support is a national organisation that supports girls and women affected by self-injury or self-harm. They have a number of updates on their services.
Resource Hub: They are developing an exciting new online hub of reliable and helpful information on self injury and would like feedback or suggestions for inclusion. Take a look here.
Support Services: The Women’s Self Injury Support Helpline CASS is now open Monday – Thursday 7-10pm. Read more here.
The text and email service TESS is open Sunday – Thursday 7-9pm.
Training: They offer workshops and bespoke training across the UK – if you would like to discuss training needs, book a place on a workshop or explore setting up a workshop local to you with other organisations just let us know.
The training currently covers:
- working with adults, young people and people with learning disabilities in relation to self injury
- working with self injury in school and other educational settings
- supporting callers in distress
- working with people given a BPD diagnosis
- personal and workplace wellbeing
Ebulletin: They offer a well-regarded monthly ebulletin rounding up news, research and innovation in the area of self injury. To receive the ebulletin you can sign up on the homepage.
'Boot out austerity' march needs speakers
On 19th April, a group of social workers and supporters will set off from Birmingham on a seven-day walk to Liverpool, to arrive the day before the British Association of Social Workers hold their 2017 Annual General Meeting and Conference there -
you too can get involved. Drawing inspiration from the Jarrow marchers of 1936, and more recently the People’s March for the NHS in 2014 and a group of psychologists who Walked the Talk in 2015, the aim of the walkers will be to highlight the devastating impact of nine years of austerity.
Speakers wanted: The organisers want to have a good send-off each morning, which will help to add to the publicity the walk generates - which is the whole point of doing the walk. People will be gathering at 9am each morning - in Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Stafford, Stoke, Sandbach, Northwich (10am, Sunday lie-in!) and Runcorn
- Days 1 (19th April) to 7 (25th April) respectively. Precise meeting points will be on the website (address below) very soon.
It would be great if each morning there was a local service user, carer, survivor or other concerned citizen, who was able to join in to say a few words as part of that morning's send-off. If you're interested in doing this on one of the days, could you phone Guy Shennan, one of the walk organisers, on 07841 529798 or email him at
firstname.lastname@example.org. To register your interest, encourage those walking, offer to host an event en route, highlight a service, offer accommodation or simply state your support, please complete this short questionnaire. Visit the website for more information.
The Royals in the news
Prince Harry talks about the importance of counselling
Daily Telegraph, The Independent, BBC News
Prince William and Lady Gaga discuss mental health for Heads Together.
on the rise again in England. ECT stages comeback after years of decline, with thousands treated on NHS despite lack of scientific explanation for effects. Read more here.
Out of area placement figures
for February show hundreds of patients not being treated locally – up from 612 to 644. And the number who have to travel more than 185 miles has almost doubled – with the bill for out of area placements £435,680 higher than in the previous month. Read more here.
DWP accused of 'rewarding failure' over 'extortionate' benefit assessors payouts
Private companies carrying out controversial assessments for disability benefits are set to bank millions of pounds more than was budgeted for in their contracts, new figures suggest. Read Disability Rights UK response here.
Consultation on voluntary sector mental health services
Birmingham Cross City Clinical Commissioning Group - consultation on mental health recovery and employment services, provided by the third sector consultation. Your views are needed on proposals for improvements in mental health day services. From 1 March until 26 May views are being sought on a number of proposed changes to some of the mental health services the CCG buy from third sector organisations.
The full background information can be found in the consultation document
The consultation questionnaire can be completed online here.
A public meeting is being held Thursday 4 May, 2pm to 4.30pm at MAC Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH
NHS Five Year Forward View - Next Steps
Published 31 March, this document
reviews the progress made since the launch of the NHS Five Year Forward View in October 2014 and sets out a series of practical and realistic steps for the NHS to deliver a better, more joined-up and more responsive NHS in England. You can view the online version here and go straight to the mental health section here.
You can view videos of the NHS England Board meeting 30 March
More benefit changes come into force this month
Take a look at the 2017 timetable - https://www.turn2us.org.uk/Benefit-guides/Benefit-Changes/Benefit-Changes-Timetable-2017-2018
Public Health England consultation outcome recently updated
This consultation closed last year. The page
concerning its results was updated on 12 April 2017
Papers to help understand ESF and ERDF funding
The EU funds many projects via its 'European Social Fund' and 'European Regional Development Fund' programmes. If you are a provider looking to finance a project, the following guidance can help understand what the funds are about and whether you qualify. ESF 2014 - 2020 provider guidance, ERDF operational programme.
It is 10 years since the 'Doing it for ourselves’ service user conference in Birmingham. It was at this conference in 2006 that the vision of the National Survivor User Network (NSUN) was taken forward, leading to funding in 2007 and becoming a fully independent organisation in May 2010.
We have survived! To enable us to continue to connect, communicate and influence, we need your help. Please spread the word to help raise funds to continue our work through our #NSUNthrive10 campaign. You can also raise money by shopping online with the Giving Machine