Very early October 13 mental health and health and social care news, views, opinions, events etc

Well-a well, what might we have as we slide into October?Of course, another reminder, which is probably your last (since it’ll be done dusted and be naught but a receding memory by the time of the next mailout…) about the big, big, big mental health event for the North East,yes, the whole region. It’s being held in Newcastle, but has folk from all over the region coming along, and it’ll be lovely to see you make it too.
Here’s a link to the press release, all official and proper like, and here a link to where you can download the poster in hi-res glory, or just click here to see what it looks like.

Okay, now on to all the other stuff. Please find attached the latest newsletter (entitled Newsletter 21) from our colleagues over at NEMHDU
Then we have a roster of weekly updates from our pals at NSUN: one, two,three, plus the opportunity to become a trustee and join the board of NSUN.

Now other news, views etc, which will be a right royal mix-up, so as to intersperse the dismaying stuff about welfare reform, cuts etc with more heartening or at least less disheartening items. Conversely it could be seen as an array of upbeat items, grounded by the gritty news items, keepin’ it real. Glass half full or half empty? Or glass the wrong size…(or possibly where’ve I put my glasses?). Enough!

On we continue: a link to an article about the cumulative effects of benefits "reform" (that’s "reform", much as mechanically recovered meat, a.k.a. gristle and grisly slurry is "reformed" into turkey twizzlers)

Next, positive action: if you’re 25 or under could you please, please complete this quick on-line survey for YoungMinds (see link) to help us to develop the content of our next campaign – it only takes a couple of minutes and you might win a voucher. Also, please ask friends on Facebook / Twitter to get involved so that we can get a really good understanding about the views of young people.

Along the same lines, “if you’re interested in young people and their mental health, please sign up for YoungMinds new e-newsletter –

Back to the bad stuff: How the ‘scrounger’ myth is causing real suffering to many in society

Good after bad: Supermarkets back down over stupid, shoddy, stigmatising costumes (canny way to get a whopping "donation" mind you: ).

Plain bad, and surprisingly overlooked: That doyen of diplomacy and great thinker of our times, Eric Pickles. Phew, deep breath, and what’s he done now. Oh, right. He tells survivor of alleged child abuse: ‘Adjust your medication’.

Good, and a bit different: an offer for mental health workers, volunteers etc.

FREE! Dru Yoga Retreat Day For Mental Health Workers and Volunteer Service Users

Discover the potent effect Dru’s unique flowing sequences,
postures, directed breathing and visualisation designed to keep you

feeling vital, energised and full of radiant health!
Restore Your Inner Balance And Calm
Dru Yoga works on body, mind and spirit—improving strength and
flexibility, creating core stability, positivity and provides a deep and

lasting sense relaxation for your whole being.
Dru Yoga is suitable for people of all ages, abilities and levels of
fitness, is easily adapted and modified to your needs. It is a flowing
form of yoga, bringing you to point of stillness in the heart centre.
October 15th 2013
10am-12pm – Calm balance and flow
12-1pm – Bring healthy lunch items to share and networking
1-3pm – Open your heart – make space to breath
Come to one or both sessions – you’ll feel great! Please bring a mat

and blanket if you have one, or let us know for them to be provided.
Fulwell Resource Centre, Fulwell Road, Sunderland, SR6 9QW
For more info call Marcia Ash 07947805065

To book your place please email: marcia.ash

Bad again, and the charming fellow that is Iain Duncan Smith. Who is seeking to make it harder for the sick and disabled to claim benefits. This comment nails him. And some interesting commentary on this can be read here. and this and this are also decent analyses of the dog’s breakfast and looming catastrophes with benefits and welfare shake-ups. Confused? You should be. Some political reputations will be damaged, but that’s as nothing compared to the enormous, and possibly lethal harm done to the vulnerable

Back to the good stuff, and an attachment to go with it. It relates to the big research project, directed and conducted by service users and carers with Northumbria University, looking at the question "Is there a Pathway to Recovery through Care Coordination?

This research is a partnership between service users, carers, Northumbria University and the local NHS Trust. We are interested to know your views on care coordination and whether you think there is a pathway to recovery within mental health services. We would therefore like to talk to you about your experiences.You can be assured that we will treat any information you share with us confidentially. You will be interviewed by two people who have used services; they have been trained as researchers at the University. The interview will take place on a day and time that is most convenient to you and we will pay you £10 for your time and expertise.

The chances to be interviewed are still available and attached are the respective letters and info sheets for service users and for carers respectively wishing to participate and be interviewed.

And let’s wrap up with something interesting, decent and even (whisper it…) cultural. You may recall frequent mention made of the Hearing the Voice project, looking at the phenomenon of voice hearing from all angles. Well,they’re doing stuff at the Durham Book Festival, and quite a lot of stuff at that, all readable here.

Now I do hope to see you this Saturday at Grey’s Monument. If you’re not there, you really should have a pretty good excuse worked out…

Our last bit


Alisdair Cameron
LAUNCHPAD Team Leader,
NTWSU&C n/wk co-chair (with Mish Loraine)
(for network business: ntwsuc)

Offices 210 and 211,
Holy Jesus Hospital,
City Road,
Newcastle upon Tyne,

Tel 0191 2330382 (personal mobile 07736074213)

E-mail launchpadncl

or alisdairscameron

Newsletter 21.pdf

Service User Letter of Invitation Version 2 August 02 2013 .doc

SU Information Sheet Version 5 April 2013 (2).doc

Carer letter of invitation Launchpad.doc

Carer Information Sheet Version for Launchpad Sept 2012 (2).doc

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