What happens when people leave a psychiatric ward? How can they best be supported to transition back home and live well? This was the focus of the 'Exit And Recovery' project I led for community peer support service and its local health provider.
A big part of the change many of us want to see is a more inclusive society. By reducing the stigma and discrimination associated with mental illness, the potential for recovery and integration is enhanced. I was strategic advisor to the governments development of our national plan to work towards this.
It's well known that people often struggle the most when traditional mental health services are closed for anything except crisis situations. Evenings and weekends are when a simple chat can help if people are feeling unsettled and prevent things getting worse. I was privileged to put together the first professional Warmline as a peer support helpline service.
For me DBT (Dialectical Behavioural Therapy) takes all the best bits of the better-known CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and adds useful tools from Eastern traditions like acceptance and mindfulness. I felt privileged to be able to help the country's only residential DBT service with strategic and operational planing to improve accessibility and continue to deliver services.