Free

Sharing Power: Sustaining the Roots of Peer Support in Statutory Services

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Kingsley Hall Community Centre

Powis Road

London

E3 3HJ

United Kingdom

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Voice Collective and Voices Unlocked, are teaming up to deliver this FREE half-day conference

About this Event

Over the last 15 years, Mind in Camden’s Hearing Voices projects have set up Hearing Voices groups and developed mental health training/workshops within an ideological framework determined by a grass roots peer support ethos. These trainings and groups have included training around how gender identity may impact someone's experience in services, launching groups specifically for women, and highlighting the importance of inclusivity around trans issues.

We’ve also taken this ethos with us into our work developing groups in a range of settings including: prisons, immigration removal centres, secure units, youth offending services, CAMHS inpatient and outpatient services, and youth centres.

This afternoon we'll be reflecting on the value and challenges of setting up and facilitating Hearing Voices peer support groups in institutional settings:

• Can a ‘real’ Hearing Voices group take place in statutory services? Or is their radical nature too diluted?

• What are the particular challenges of facilitating a peer support group for paid staff, volunteers or service users?

• Are there specific considerations for Hearing Voices groups in youth services? How do we safeguard yet allow for positive risk taking in these types of groups?

• What can we do if we feel we’re the only one in our community, organisation or workplace with an interest in Hearing Voices groups or other ‘alternative’ approaches?

Join us for an afternoon opened by speaker Mirabai Swingler - Mirabai worked for 10 years in acute mental health services, set up and ran peer support groups for staff, on wards and for community service users. She is a mental health activist, peer support trainer and Only Us Campaign founder, all held together by a passion for human rights and a recent discovery of the practicality of the politics of anarchism for the redistribution of power.

You'll have the chance to join one of two workshops and we'll end the day with a panel discussion and Q&A featuring:

Nikki Mattocks - “I hear voices and It’s a continuous battle to use it as a strength, but I’m getting there. I live with bpd and schizophrenia and when I was 17 I set up a peer support group called evolve to help other young people struggling. I’m on a journey to find happiness and peace and I use that in my professional life as a support worker and activist”

Jason Poole - "I am a trainee clinical psychologist, researcher and lecturer with lived experience of psychosis. My work is concerned with spaces in which people are detained against their will, and how these experiences shape people's distress. I worked with the Voices Unlocked project to establish the first Hearing Voices group in a migrant detention centre."

Nina-Marie Schaff - "I'm Nina, I work as a prison officer in HMYOI Cookham Wood which is a young offenders' institution in Kent. I work with boys aged 15-18 serving custodial sentences. I am aiming to set up a peer support group within Cookham Wood, so that young people in custody have a safe space to talk about voice hearing without it being 'taboo'. I am also trying to raise awareness of the Hearing Voices Movement to tackle staff misconceptions."

Andy Phee - "I'm a Mindfulness teacher with a background in community mental health nursing. I am interested in diverse ways of understanding voices and unusual beliefs and co-facilitated a hearing voices group for several years. More recently I have been teaching mindfulness to prisoners and prison staff and facilitating mindfulness groups for people who hear distressing voices, in partnership with several London Mind projects"

Tamar Jeynes - "I have worked as a Lived Experience Practitioner since 2010, when I first trained and worked with Emergence CIC delivering consultancy and training in Personality Disorder with the National KUF (Knowledge & Understanding Framework) team. This work was delivered across the UK to a variety of NHS, forensic, public, private and voluntary sector organisations. I have also worked with the NHS since 2012 in the delivery and design of services for people diagnosed with Personality Disorder."

Who is the conference for?

The conference is for anyone who may have experienced or observed the challenge of retaining peer support values in institutional settings. Voice hearers and those with lived experience of distress or unusual sensory experiences are especially welcome.

You may be someone whose work and passion for peer support and/or Hearing Voices Groups embeds you within an institution, or you may work directly for the institution itself — for example, supporting children and young people, women, young offenders, people impacted by the justice system, or refugees and asylum seekers of all ages.

Examples of relevant organisations where peer support initiatives are often hosted can be CAMHS, youth services, prison/secure settings, immigration removal centres, organisations working with refugees & asylum seekers, schools, universities, hospitals and mental health services. Equally this half-day may also be of interest, if you are involved in an independent peer-led group in the community.

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Kingsley Hall Community Centre

Powis Road

London

E3 3HJ

United Kingdom

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