Improving service provision by ensuring the voices of carers and mental health service users are listened to and their views acted upon was the theme of today’s “Movin’ On Up” event in Caerphilly.
Bryn Davies, a carer and volunteer from Hafal’s Caerphilly project, said: “I have come into contact with mental health services as a young carer (caring for my father) and as a service user. During this time I have experienced good and bad practices. I believe that if I had received more appropriate information and had been consulted on both my father’s and my own care we both would have been in a better position to make decisions about our care and treatment. Looking forward, the good news is the Mental Health Measure means there will be a duty on mental health services to work with service users when writing a care plan and the Carers Measure should ensure that better information is supplied to carers.
“From a personal point of view working with Hafal has been really positive and helpful in supporting me through my recovery. I was referred as a service user to one of the Caerphilly projects 15 months ago; I’m now working as a volunteer at the Hyderus project. Since coming to Hafal I am more aware of service user and carer rights under the new legislation so I am more able to support my father in making decisions about his care and treatment.”
The aim of the “Movin’ On Up” campaign is to maximise the opportunities for recovery from serious mental illness which are provided by the Government’s new Strategy “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 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_