Aberdare Service users talk Mental Health Strategy

The Strategy sets out the Government‘s vision for mental health services over the next ten years. Consultation events on the Strategy have been taking place across Wales. The events have allowed service users and carers to have their say on what they would like to see in the Strategy.

Aberdare service user Ioan Bevan who has bipolar disorder said: “For me the main focus in the new Strategy has to be on delivery. We have very good legislation in Wales, the key is to ensure that the new laws are fully implemented. That’s going to be difficult in the current economic climate but now that we’ve got the Measure and the new holistic Care and Treatment Plans we’ve got to strive to make the most of them. There’s no excuses now we have the Measure – services have to deliver!

“From a personal point of view I think service users need as much help as we can get particularly when it comes to returning to work. Employment is my ultimate goal. I’ve attended training courses which have helped my confidence; coming to Hafal over the last ten years has helped me enormously, too.”

A Mental Health Service User and Carer Panel (who have regular contact with large numbers of service users and carers across Wales) compiled a response to the Draft Strategy. To read about the areas of the Strategy they think need to be strengthened please click here.

The aim of the “Movin’ On Up” campaign is to maximise the opportunities for recovery from serious mental illness which are provided by “Together for Mental Health”, and the historic Mental Health (Wales) Measure. The Measure is hugely significant because it affords service users key new rights and has finally given users of secondary mental health services in Wales the legal right to a comprehensive holistic Care and Treatment Plan covering areas such as: accommodation; finance and money; and education and training.

The “Movin’ On Up” campaign is run by service users and carers and supported by mental health charities Hafal, Bipolar UK and the Mental Health Foundation. 22 weekly county events are taking place and the campaign will culminate in a climb of Wales’ highest peak, Snowdon, in September. The campaign will also feature an interactive stand at the Royal Welsh Show and, on World Mental Health Day, at the National Assembly.

• For more information on “Together for Mental Health” please click here.
• To download a copy of Mental Health Service User and Carer Panel Response to the Draft Strategy please click here.
• For more pictures from the event go to Hafal’s Facebook page.
• For more information on the campaign please visit: www.hafal.org
• To get the latest updates on Twitter please go to: http://twitter.com/#!/hafal_