Welcome to this Summer edition of the CPSL Mind e-bulletin – an opportunity for us to share our news and highlight the impact of our work across Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire.
We have focused this e-bulletin on the incredible work of our Campaigns team and Perinatal Service; our suicide prevention training work with local GPs and our Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) project Resilient Together.
A number of our services, which are funded by either the NHS or local authority, have gone out to tender this year. We await the outcome of that process and will provide an update in our next issue.
Chief Executive Officer
STOP Suicide campaign reaches millions!
During May 2018 our STOP Suicide campaign was taken to the next level with a high-profile publicity campaign across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, funded by the gaming company Jagex.
We know that 70% of people who die by suicide have not been in contact with mental health services in the year before their death. Therefore it is vital that everyone in the community is aware and can support those around them to seek help.
That is our aim – to empower communities and individuals to help stop suicides by:
- being alert to the warning signs.
- asking directly about suicide.
- helping those who are feeling suicidal to stay safe.
What better way to reach our community than by advertising on buses and radio, by running a social media campaign, by appearing in the media and by hitting the streets with a giant LED TV attached to the side of a van to show the people of Cambridgeshire our STOP Suicide campaign film!?
We were able to host STOP Suicide roadshow events – at which we used our LED TV van and Campaign Makers interacted with the public – at Cambridge train station, Peterborough city centre, Wisbech town centre, Anglia Ruskin University, Tesco, Cambridge United FC and Peterborough United FC.
As we begin to evaluate the impact of this stage of STOP Suicide, we can already see that we interacted with at least 5000 local people at our events distributing around 32,000 resources to individuals and organisations. Far more individuals in Cambridgeshire will have seen a bus advert, heard us on the radio or seen us appearing on BBC Look East at our launch event.
The reach of STOP Suicide doesn’t end there though, our campaign film has been viewed nearly 70,000 times online and our social media campaign has been seen over 1.9 million times across Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. A truly international impact.
Our hope is that those who have come into contact with STOP Suicide will have taken away the key messages and will now be more suicide-aware. Early indications in a Cambridgeshire pre- & post-campaign survey show that this appears to be the case locally at least.
It’s not too late to get involved with the campaign as STOP Suicide continues to raise awareness. You can join over 2250 people who have already pledged their support by signing the STOP Suicide Personal Pledge today.
Training GPs in suicide prevention
Having engaged our community through the STOP Suicide campaign, we need to ensure that practical professional support is available in Cambridgeshire to those who need it.
One of the projects which we are working on to achieve this is led by Kate Beed, our GP Training Coordinator. She has been working hard to implement and deliver the highly regarded, evidence based ‘Connecting with People’ suicide prevention training to GPs.
We know that 40% of all GP appointments now involve mental health ill health but that current initial training for GPs can be limited – only one of the 21 compulsory modules is specifically dedicated to mental health.
This is an area for concern as GPs are likely to encounter individuals in mental health crisis and are in a prime position to identify the warning signs of suicide in others. Yet they may not currently be equipped with the full range of skills and tools which they require to support their patients.
Our aim is to train at least one GP from every surgery in Cambridgeshire to ensure that individuals in our community are able to access high-level, appropriate support when necessary.
Although still in its early stages, 35 GPs and a further 56 Primary Care staff have already been trained with more sessions planned.
The training has been well received so far and Kate was even invited to deliver at the Royal College of General Practitioners Regional Conference – which she did!
Mums Matter: Katie’s story
Research shows that 68% of women with mental health problems are parents.
At CPSL Mind we run two perinatal services. Connecting Mums is a six-week course for women who are pregnant or have given birth in the past two years. The main aim is to prevent women becoming unwell by bringing them together to connect them to other mums and reducing isolation.
The other service is Mums Matter which is for women who have experienced a perinatal mental health problem. We run the Mums Matter sessions in children’s centres with a crèche, so mums can have time away from their babies and really focus on the issues we discuss: everything from breaking down the idea of a ‘perfect mum’ to changing negative thought patterns.
Katie, who now volunteers with us, took part in the Mums Matter course and shares the positive impact which it had on her:
“Being around the other Mums massively helped my recovery and helped me to realise that I wasn’t alone. This really enabled me to be honest with myself for the first time.
Because of the Mums Matter course I felt empowered and inspired to move forward with my life and I am now in a place where I am ready to give back and help other Mums.”
If you’d like to find out more about our perinatal services please contact Corrina Turner, Perinatal Service Lead at email@example.com
Resilient Together: Alan’s story
Our Resilient Together project aims to encourage citizens in their local area to work together towards a shared vision for their local community. Alan’s story highlights the importance and impact of encouraging more neighbour to neighbour support and exchange, which we believe to be an essential part of a neighbourhood’s wellbeing.
Alan was lacking the confidence and the know-how to find someone to support him with maintaining his overgrown garden. Although a service could have done the work for him, our Resilient Together team of Community Builders were able to connect him with his own resources, allowing him to discover unrecognised assets of his own and of his immediate neighbours.
This is Alan’s story:
“I was speaking to my family worker a couple weeks ago about the state of my garden. Last year I had problems with the arthritis in my knees, and since then I’ve been in and out of work so I haven’t been able to get out there and control it…It has become a jungle and it’s pretty overwhelming for one person to try and do themselves.”
“I’m not always good at asking people for help, so when (Resilient Together Community Builders) suggested asking my neighbours I was a bit unsure.”
After reaching out for support: “Caz replied and came round the following Monday, we spent three hours clearing the garden together!! We cleared at least 80%. It was a lot better, but my legs are so sore! Whilst clearing my shed out, I found a couple of vivariums that I said I was going to bin, Caz said she needed one for her hedgehogs so I gave it to her. She was very grateful.”
“It felt really good, because I was helping her out in return. I didn’t feel so awkward when she took that as I had given something back to her.”
Stress LESS Champions graduate with Honours!
Our Stress LESS campaign has been running since April 2016 and seeks to empower students (aged 12–18) to find positive ways of coping with school/college and exam stress.
A key part of the campaign is a network of Stress LESS Champions – students (aged 12–18) – who innovate within their school to promote mental wellbeing and signpost their peers to support.
On 28th June, Nene Park Academy celebrated the work of Stress LESS champions with a graduation ceremony at Orton Hall Hotel in Peterborough.
The students have done an amazing job of encouraging mental wellbeing in their school.
In conjunction with The Network for East Anglian Collaborative Outreach (neaco), our Champions have delivered Stress LESS training to their peers and younger students. Ofsted even attended one of these sessions and graded it outstanding!
They have also been working on several innovative projects to improve the school environment and increase the number of resources on offer to students.
We are very proud of their work and the work of all of our other Champions across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.
We are currently offering Guides and Scouts in Cambridgeshire free Stress LESS sessions and are looking for groups to participate.
If you’d like to find out more about the Stress LESS campaign please contact firstname.lastname@example.org