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Breaking the Rules (up North)
Thu 14 July 2016, 10:30 – 16:00 BST
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Breaking the Rules: An affirmative approach to mental health leadership
This blended course will challenge and change your thinking and increase your confidence in your mental health leadership. It:
- Takes an affirmative approach to mental health leadership, welcomes neurodiversity and refuses to construct it as a deficit or problem
- Views mental health and wellbeing as an essential ingredient of all of our identities and resilience - self, learners, colleagues, and organisations
- Puts mental health and wellbeing leadership under a pan-equalities lens.
- Sees effective leadership as central to improvement - especially in the complex real world circumstances we work and learn in
- Recognises that anyone can lead for mental health, regardless of their job title, position in an organisational hierarchy or where they are at in their career journey
- Proposes systems thinking and the sharing of leadership across organisations as ways to achieve change for mental health and wellbeing and improve outcomes
- Challenges your thinking and increase your confidence in your mental health leadership - face your challenges, have those challenging conversations, prepare for the future.
Who is the course for?
This course is for any leader/manager (including aspiring leaders/managers) who wish to make positive change happen for mental health in your organisation. The course is for staff in the FACES (further, adult, community, education, and skills) sector, but anyone with an interest in adult education and mental health is welcome to apply.
Our approach will enable you to develop your knowledge of mental health in the context of existing and new leadership theories, applying the latter to the former through a series of self-identified leadership challenges.
At the most senior level FACES leadership is a bit of a monoculture, which we are determined to challenge and change, so we want the fullest diversity of FACES staff on this course. We're especially keen to reach colleagues who have lived experience of barriers and boosts to their CPD and progression that are linked to their identities and being able to be present as yourself in the workplace.
To get the most out of this course, you will be open to working critically and collaboratively to maintain the integrity of mental health and wellbeing in adult education.
What's the cost?
Usually we charge between £300 and £600 (depending on your organisation's level of income) but on this occasion, it is free to:
- FACES staff who are directly involved in a BIS Community Learning Mental Health research project
- Up to five people from other FACES sector organisations but, here's the catch, you will need to make a financial donation to the charity of our choice or donate 8 hours of your time to the MHFE-Crowd before the face-to-face session takes place.
How does it work?
Breaking the Rules is a tapestry. Brilliant threads we stitch together - some ours, some yours; some theory, some fantasy; some creative, some digital; some challenging and we hope all inspiring and illuminating.
1. Thinking about your mental health leadership
Flipped classroom style, we start off with a bit of 'E' a week before the workshop on 14 July. The 'E' is a short e-learning experience. We will share why we think everyone in FACES is a leader and why we passionately believe mental health leadership has to be affirmative. We'll introduce you to the Thinking Environment which you may find is something of a revelation. We'll ask you to share what you see as your leadership challenge/s. Don't worry/back-off or change your mind about the course if that sounds like 'leadership speak' or is too scary for words (or if you don't think of yourself as a leader, or your mind's gone a complete blank now): We've got activities to help.
2. Getting the change you want
At the face to face session on 14 July, you'll start getting the change you want. You'll deepen your thinking about mental health leadership and work out what you need to do to lead in your area of practice to make things change. You'll do this in a Thinking Environment alongside colleagues on the same journey. You'll have the help of 4 fantastic facilitators (Lou, Sally, Tom, and Rich - at this point when he reads this Tom's going to say he's not a leadership facilitator but as Northern College's digital nurse that's what he does every day.)
3. Keeping your mental health leadership going
The most important bit of all, because we've all been to conferences and one-day courses where we came away full of ideas and good intentions to read everything and follow up with people on the delegate list -when we've got time. But those good intentions start to evaporate when back in the real non-stop world that is our work. Soon, we realise all we did was manage to get a day away from it all/find out some new information/meet some interesting and hopefully like-minded people and get a pile of slide presentation handouts or resources, that somehow no longer feel so exciting/relevant to the immediate demands on us.
Of course, it's not always like that, but too often that's exactly how it goes. We've been there too. As educators, we all know that's not good education and it's not how people learn. Learning needs to be theory challenged and consolidated. It needs nurturing and testing through repetition, time, and the challenge of practice. Enter our 'Breaking the Rules' time-limited hard-working, supportive online community of your peers (some on this course with you and some alumni from earlier courses). This community will help you to challenge and develop your leadership praxis and prepare you for the future.
From mid-July to October (yes we know you’ll dip in and out during the summer months) we’ll keep the conversations going and support you through deeper thinking and short activities to develop your affirmative mental health leadership in the context of your real-life challenges and opportunities. We'll ask you to reflect on your learning and the impact your work is having, and we’d love you to share this with the wider sector through the MHFE World Mental Health Day 2016 webinars in October.
At a time of huge flux and change in further, adult, community and skills education there has never been a greater need for cultural change around mental wellbeing. Together we are making a real difference. Come and join us.
Stockton Borough Council Learning and Skills Community Learning Mental Health Project is kindly hosting the face to face workshop on 14 July at Billingham Community Centre. We'll ask Hazel MacGregor to let us have insider details of the venue and some photos of the entrance to the building. That way you'll know what you are looking for at that heart-sinking moment when your sat nav tells you "You have arrived at your destination" but you can't see anywhere that's likely for where you need to be.
We want colleagues to have full access to this meeting. Please do not be offended if we ask you to help us get this right. When you complete your booking, please make sure to tell us if you have any accessibility, belief/faith, caring, dietary, learning, medical or other requirements and what we need to do so that you can participate in this meeting.
We'll confirm details of parking and access from the street with Hazel as soon as possible.
There's a quiet space if you want to pray. There is also space to get outside for anyone who may need to take a break from time to time/or doesn't want to be around food at lunchtime, has an assistance dog or or is celebrating the Buddhist Festival of Souls.
Refreshments and lunch
Refreshments will be waiting for you on arrival. There is no break during the morning session. We'll provide a light sandwich lunch at 12.30. Please let us know via the questions we ask when you book if you have any food allergies/special dietary requirements we need to be aware of.
If you have a smartphone, tablet or laptop that's not too heavy to carry, please bring it with you to the meeting
Free Wi-Fi is available and on this occasion, we have Northern College's very own digital nurse on hand. He's also going to be doing some livestreaming.
If you are not already registered on http://mhfe.org.uk please do so because that's where your course will start from
Need more info?
Contact: Sally Betts, email@example.com
We look forward to seeing you at Billingham Community Centre on Thursday 14 July 2016.
Sally, Lou, Tom and Rich