Last week in Horsham I met Emma McCarthy of the Richmond Fellowship. Working where required alongside other specialist teams, the Fellowship is the identified lead provider locally of support to people who are experiencing Mental Health issues both emotionally and practically. The service is part of a new model working across the County – providing clear lines of reference and ensuring those who need support know where to turn. Whilst many come via their GP others access the group’s support through self-referral.
Richmond have a dedicated team who have had personal experience of mental health difficulties, making them ideally placed to support others who are going through a difficult time.
Their Peer Support Team offer "One to One" emotional support, currently over twelve sessions, sharing experiences, helping individuals overcome social isolation, increase self-motivation and encouraging and supporting people to achieve their goals.
The Community Service team help with practical support to help people access social networks and peer support, access Recovery College Courses and engage in everyday mainstream opportunities.
At The Capitol on Wednesday mornings the Fellowship hold fortnightly “Social Drop In’s” from 10am to 12 noon and on Tuesday afternoon’s in the Library there is a point of access for all metal health services. Those wishing to access to support are very welcome.
This week is National Mental Health Awareness week: raising awareness of mental health and inspiring action to promote the message of good mental health for everyone. During the week events take place all over the country to raise awareness and banish any remaining stigma around issues that affect, it is believed, two in three of us at some point in our lives. Huge progress has been made– it is very clear, speaking to parliamentary colleagues, quite how much perceptions have changed even in the last 20 years, but there is always more to do.
I very much hope readers may have seen, earlier this week, the Fellowship exhibition in Swan Walk. For those seeking support they have a totally committed and dedicated team who know first hand what those who call on them are going through.
Photo caption: Meeting Emma McCarthy of the Richmond Fellowship in Horsham last week.