Alongside general mental health news, this week's edition shares updates concerning co-produced projects and community initiatives.
As we near the end of the year we will be packing up our office in Vauxhall ready for a move in the New Year. Vauxhall has been our home for nearly 10 years so it will be sad to leave.
The disruption of the move may result in reduced communications and availability over the next month so we would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience. We will of course continue to send the ebulletin so please do let us know if you have news that you would like included.
Launch of the new Mental Health Policy Research Unit for England
Dr Sarah Carr, NSUN Vice-Chair, was a member of the Mental Health Question Time event that launched the new NIHR Mental Health Policy Research Unit 29 November. The event was streamed live and can be viewed on YouTubehere. Sarah was asked to respond to the question 'The task between policy and evidence gap involves academics informing policy makers of relevant and abjective findings. There is not much of a role for public engagement and service user involvement or is there?
The policy research unit is hosted at UCL, jointly led by UCL and King’s College London, alongside researchers from City, University of London and Middlesex University. It is funded at a cost of £5m for five years. See advert below for a Service User and Carer Involvement Coordinator.
Following the launch of the unit theFramework for Mental Health Research,which sets out 10 recommendations to improve the impact of mental health research over the next decade, was announced. The Framework was funded by NIHR, Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, the Economic and Social Research Council, MQ and the Alliance of Mental Health Research. The recommendations include a focus on prevention and early intervention, increased patient and public engagement, user-led research and stronger connections between physical and mental health research.
The framework has been published in response to a recommendation in theFive Year Forward View for Mental Healthin 2016 and representatives of the main funders will meet this month to discuss the recommendations.
Work with a new mental health policy research unit
Employer: UCL / Division UCL Division of Psychiatry Grade: 6 Hours: Part Time Hours per week (%FTE): 14.6 (40% FTE) Salary (inclusive of London allowance): £30,316 per annum pro rata Closing Date: 7 Jan 2018 Latest time for the submission of applications: 23:59 Interview date: 29 Jan 2018
Duties and Responsibilities
The Department of Health is setting up a new Mental Health Policy Research Unit, run by a research team based at University College London and Kings College London. This unit will carry out a programme of policy-relevant research over the next five years, as agreed with the Department of Health.
They are seeking to recruit a Service User and Carer Involvement Coordinator for the Unit. The post holder will manage public involvement activity within the unit, under the direction of the PPI Lead and the Unit Directors. This will include organising a Lived Experience Advisory Panel (LEAP) of mental health service users and carers, making links with other PRU advisors, user- and carer-led groups nationally, and contributing to writing up and publicising the work of the unit for a wide audience.
This part time post (2 days a week) is funded until 31st August 2022 in the first instance.
Applicants will need some previous experience of coordinating service user and carer involvement, ideally in a mental health research context. They will also need personal experience of using mental health services, or experience of supporting a close friend or family member who has used or uses mental health services.
Further information about the role and details of how to apply are available here.
How do you cope with Christmas?
A BBC team is looking to make three films about coping with the christmas period.
The team would like to know whether you'd like to discuss:
1. How to get through the office christmas party if you're feeling anxious/ down / unwell. People who have coping tips specific to their own mental health. What can you do to take the pressure off yourself, to make it easier? What should you avoid? Are there clever tricks or tips?
2. Experiences of sensory overload because of a mental illness: do you find the noise, colour and social aspects of Christmas difficult? Particularly the Christmas shop. How do you cope?
3. Depression or loneliness at new year. Big moments in the year can feel more difficult when you're unwell or alone. The team is looking to speak to people who be experiencing this at new year and talk to them about how they plan to spend it. The team is hoping for the film to be in someway uplifting - perhaps people who relish the peace or who have found a way to meet new people at new years.
The BBC team is keen to hear from you this week (early December).
If you end up agreeing on being filmed, the team would travel to a location of your convenience.
Calling young film makers based in the North West of England
Are you an aspiring young film maker, based in the North West and / or able to travel to Manchester in January?
The organisation Disabled Living would like to talk to young people (14-25 years) who have a disability or additional needs and would like to be involved in making a film by interviewing older disabled people about their experiences when they were children.
Disabled Living are looking for six young people, ideally living in the North West of England and who are able to travel to Manchester for two days on 13 and 14 January 2018 to make the film.
This project is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
For further information contact Debra Evans 0161 607 8200 or
A group of service users on the Wirral have got together to produce a booklet on mental health. Comprising of artwork, prose and poetry, the booklet proves to be a fascinating insight into what it is to live with and overcome mental health problems.
First conceived in late 2012, the project has involved talking to and collaborating with a number of local mental health organisations. Artwork was also collected at a local mental health hospital as well as from highly regarded artists in the local area.
The booklet also features a feel-good playlist from ex Coral guitarist Bill Ryder Jones and a cartoon from Calmzine illustrator Chris Sav. Funds for the project were gathered by applying for a local community fund which we were successful in obtaining in Spring 2016.
The project's second booklet was printed in early 2017 and has been distributed over the last 6 months in the Wirral and Liverpool areas in cafes, barbers, pharmacies to name but a few! To have a look for yourself, find a link to the booklet here
Pick your top 10 questions about using digital technology for mental health
MindTech Digital MHQ Project want to hear from people with mental health problems, supporter/carers for others with mental health problems and health and social care professionals. This is their second survey giving people the opportunity to direct future research into digital technologies for mental health.
The aim of this project is to prioritise areas for future research which people with direct experience of mental health problems think are the most important. It’s about making sure the researchers and research funders focus on the right questions. If you would like to show which questions are the most important to you, complete the surveyhere.
To find out more about the project, visit the website.
Book launch: Institutional Racism in Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology
Suman Fernando's latest book - Institutional Racism in Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology: Race Matters in Mental Health, launches in January.
Date: 17 January 2018
Time: 16:45 - 19:00
Venue: The Henry Thomas Room, 166-220 Holloway Road, London N7 8DB
Chaired by John Gabriel: Senior Professor, London Metropolitan University. Speakers: Colin King: Mental health survivor researcher and practitioner, Football coach; Former teacher at Lambeth College for Further Education and Yvonne Christie: Activist in the field of Black mental health and race equality.
Peter Hirst, from Leicester, and his band Refuge recorded the single to aid the #rethinkyourmind project. There was piece done for BBC Leicester Facebook which moved to BBC East Midlands to BBC England and now to BBC Health and Lifestyle.
You can take a look at the promo video on BBC Leicester.
The project also featured on BBC East Midlands during the first week end of December.
Community newspaper needs to prove commercial viability
Tottenham Community Press was launched in November 2016 and has just published its 7th bi-monthly issue. Tottenham is one of a growing number of areas in the UK with no dedicated local newspaper.
As the London Assembly noted a couple of months, this decline in local news is 'undermining democracy':
Community newspapers are a social enterprise alternative - combining the input of paid professional journalists with local volunteering to produce high quality independent publications dedicated to supporting the local community and ensuring that all voices are heard, not just those of the richest and most powerful. Tottenham Community Press is still at the stage where it needs to prove it can be commercially viable.
That is why a crowdfunderhas been launched. If the full target of £15,000 is reached, Tottenham Community Press will be able to move from bi-monthly to monthly publication in early 2018. Any contributions will help to sustain the paper to the point where it is able to sustain itself.
Please get in touch with publisher David Floyd at Social Spider if you have any questions. Office: 020 8521 7956 Mobile: 07789 778 085 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Positive Mental Health Group - Birmingham
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.
Join 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.
Date:Tuesday 19th December -
Time: 2.30pm to 4.30pm
Venue: Cafe, 38 - 40 Holloway Circus, Birmingham city centre B1 1EQ
Mental Health & Money Advice - Rethink
Rethink Mental Illness has launched Mental Health & Money Advice. It is the first UK-wide advice service dedicated to supporting people affected by mental health and money issues including carers, friends, families and professionals within the area.
Four million people in the UK have both mental health and money problems, and a further four million are at risk because they’re having financial difficulties. Together these issues can create a worrying cycle that can lead to problems with relationships, work and housing. While there are many excellent debt advice services available, this service can offer mental health support alongside advice.
Learn more about the servicehereand watch a video about the servicehere.
Healthcare UK (UCUK) forthcoming mental health events
NSUN members can benefit from a 20% discount is available by quoting ref: HCUK20NSUN when booking.(*Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. Full T&Cs available upon request.
NSUN's Emma Ormerod is speaking at the Electronic Prescribing in Mental Health event, 23 February.
For a full list of mental health events and master classes please take a look here.
Report: embedding a culture of quality improvement
he King's Fund report 'embedding a culture of quality improvement' explores the factors that helped five NHS trusts launch and sustain a quality improvement strategy.
Quality improvement is a systematic approach to improving health services and the quality of care and outcomes for patients based on iterative change, continuous testing and measurement, and empowerment of frontline teams.
For a summary of key points and a publication (PDF) please visit this page
Briefing paper: use of force in mental health units
This House of Commons Library briefing provides information on key provisions in the Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill 2017-19.
The Bill is seeking to make pro vision about the oversight and management of use of force in relation to patients in mental health units and similar settings.
Big Brother is an intimate photographic portrayal of photographer Louis Quail's brother Justin’s daily struggle with schizophrenia, to be published as a book in partnership with Dewi Lewis.
Justin has been sectioned several times in his life. As we get to know him better through this project, we can see there is more to Justin than just his illness.
In order to get the book published, Louis Quail has organised a fundraiser. If you can support him, please pledge here.
Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision: a green paper
The government is asking people for their views on a green paper setting out measures to improve mental health support for children and young people.
The green paper focuses on earlier intervention and prevention, especially in and linked to schools and colleges.
The proposals include:
creating a new mental health workforce of community-based mental health support teams
every school and college will be encouraged to appoint a designated lead for mental health
a new 4-week waiting time for NHS children and young people’s mental health services to be piloted in some areas
The consultation will be open until midday on Friday 2 March 2018, and the relevant documents can be foundhere.
NHS England are carrying out a survey which is for children, young people and adults with a learning disability, autism or both, their families and paid carers about people’s experiences of raising concerns and making complaints. Feedback will help with a new project about raising concerns and making complaints called Ask Listen Do.
Mental health in pregnancy, the postnatal period and babies and toddlers needs assessment reports now integrated with Fingertips: Thereportsfor each local authority and clinical commissioning group bring together information on risk factors and estimates of prevalence for mental health conditions for women during pregnancy and the postnatal period as well as for babies and toddlers. The reports, which were originally developed in 2015, have now been integrated with PHE’s Fingertips tool.
New tool on depression in older people: more views needed
We are developing our intelligence tools on depression in older people and we want to hear from more of you about the data and information you need to do your job. By completingour short surveyyou will be able to influence the products and support that we develop in 2018.
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