Wednesday, 20 March 2019

ENRICH AWARDS | PRE-EVENT PROMO | THREE LESSONS RICHMOND FELLOWSHIP HAVE TAUGHT ME


It's officially one sleep until the Richmond Fellowship ENRICH Awards!! 

To celebrate, I decided to write a quick post about the three lessons the organization have taught me...

After my two and a half years in Cygnet Bierley, I was transferred to a ‘rehab’ ward at my local psychiatric hospital so as to gently get used to the idea of not having staff around me 24/7. I think that all my concentration was so focused on adapting to the changes that I remember very little from my time there. Which means I can’t remember when I first met with Richmond Fellowship, but it was in 2014 so I’ve been with them for five years now!


I’d like to dedicate this post to my most recent support worker (who now has a new job!); Georgie, who has become one of my greatest friends. Oh! And a special thank you to the Richmond Fellowship Tyneside Team Manager; Alice, for always ensuring I get the greatest service available from the team.

Tuesday, 19 March 2019

AN OPEN LETTER TO MARTIN BAKER OF 'GUM ON MY SHOE'



Dear Marty,


After reading one of your recent blog posts, I know that you’ve been feeling sort of lost recently and have been questioning your place in the mental health world so I thought that perhaps this letter might motivate you through these doubts and struggles. 


Firstly, I wanted to say how glad I am to have met you at that Time To Change event – it’s always nice and fun to meet someone who you’ve connected with online, in person. But there was something special about you – something different. You were genuine. I think that, these days, it’s incredibly hard to find someone who is the same in person as they are online, not a lot of people are genuine and of course there those who hide behind a keyboard but I feel like you and I are both learning that there’s also a huge number of people on social media who can be of invaluable support online. And you have helped me to see this as I’ve gotten to know you – especially during a recent visit to A&E(!) – I’ve seen how many people you support through social media. Learning that number really did leave me speechless! It’s inspiring to think of the strength you have in order to be there for so many people.

ENRICH AWARDS | PRE-EVENT PROMO | 60 SECONDS WITH RICHMOND FELLOWSHIP'S HELEN EDWARDS



Today marks two days until the Richmond Fellowship Enrich awards 2019. I’m very proud to have been on the judging panel to shortlist all of the nominations and to now be co-chairing the entire ceremony as well as taking over the Richmond Fellowship Tyneside Twitter account!


To keep up with all of the goings on, follow #EnrichAwards on Twitter
Every day for the next week, there’ll be a new post of ‘60 seconds with…’ someone involved in the Awards. I hope you enjoy!



Name and Job Title:
Helen Edwards, Chair Richmond Fellowship and Recovery Focus 

How long have you been involved with Richmond Fellowship?
I’ve been Chair since April 2016.

What drew you to this role?
The work which Richmond Fellowship does and its good reputation.

Monday, 18 March 2019

"WE THOUGHT YOU WERE THE RINGLEADER" | MY THOUGHTS ON ENCOURAGING SELF-HARM | TW


“Do you know anyone in your town who self-harms?”

“Not in my town… nearby; why?”

“There’s a group of young girls encouraging each other to self-harm and for a while now, we’ve thought you were the ringleader!”


And that little quote, ladies and gentlemen, came from a Northumbria Police officer once he’d detained me under the Mental Capacity Act.


Now, does anyone remember #Cut4Bieber? If not (I wrote a post on it!), came off the back of a photo surfacing online of Justin Bieber taking drugs and his fans somehow interpreted it as a cause to feel hopeless and therefore a reason to self-harm. I think that when that occurred in 2013, it was the first time that I’d witnessed/experienced someone encouraging another person to do such an act.
But then as I spent more time in Hospital, I gained a whole new insight into the workings of the ward. When I was first admitted in 2012, I kept myself to myself and didn’t make the effort to get to know the other inpatients because I really didn’t think I’d be there that long (two and a half years in the end). When I realized I was in it for the long haul, I made friends with all of the girls and with one in particular. The upside to this was having someone to talk to who could identify with and understand me. The downside? I became part of the ‘club.’ Adopted the ‘us versus them’ mindset. It was this new insight that introduced me to the dark side of service user relationships with one another. Rather than supporting one another and bonding over our similar experiences and mutual thoughts, feelings, and coping mechanisms; some of the girls were encouraging one another to copy their own unsafe, and unhealthy coping skills of self-harm.

ENRICH AWARDS | PRE-EVENT PROMO | 60 SECONDS WITH RICHMOND FELLOWSHIP'S SERVICE USER: AIMEE WILSON



Today marks three days until the Richmond Fellowship Enrich awards 2019. I’m very proud to have been on the judging panel to shortlist all of the nominations and to now be co-chairing the entire ceremony as well as taking over the Richmond Fellowship Tyneside Twitter account!


To keep up with all of the goings on, follow #EnrichAwards on Twitter
Every day for the next week, there’ll be a new post of ‘60 seconds with…’ someone involved in the Awards. I hope you enjoy!


Name and job title: 
Aimee Wilson, Working Together Committee member


How long have you been involved with Richmond Fellowship?

I’ve been a service user with Richmond Fellowship Tyneside since 2014 and joined the  Working Together Committee in 2018


What drew you to this role?