Issue 16

User Participation Project 

User Involvement in the training of mental health nurses in Wales

A User Participation Project Update

Mind Cymru's Participation and Inclusion tea~are proud to announce that the final report regarding the above project has been completed, and has been forwarded to the Assembly Government Nursing Office, who funded this piece of work, for approval.

Twelve people from Caswell Clinic participated in a focus group in July this year, helping us to find out how people with experience of mental health distress could get involved in training mental health nurses in Wales. We also interviewed four people individually who could not attend the group. This was one of three groups held in Wales, and .from all that information, we came up with a draft report which had recommendations about how users could get involved in all aspects of the nurses' training, from planning the curriculum, and recruiting students, through to actually carrying out some of the training. We came to Caswell again in November where some of the original group members joined us in looking at and agreeing the recommendations.

We also worked on a good practice checklist -this will go at the end of the report, and will be a tool that can be used by the people who train mental health nurses, so that they can check whether they are indeed involving service users in a meaningful way, right throughout the process.

As usual, the people from Caswell Clinic who came to the group worked very hard, and their contributions helped enormously, they have certainly helped to shape this report and give a real insight into how people in a secure unit can still get involved at all kinds of levels. I would personally like to thank everyone who participated in this project- the report will be published in a bilingual format and launched in spring.

It is hoped that one or two people from Caswell who took part in the project will be able to come to the launch, more news about that later when we know the date. In the meantime, I am hoping to come and visit you all at Caswell one evening in January, with Anna, my team administrator, to tell you about our work, and to help you discover ways you could get involved in some of that.

A very big thank you to all my friends at Caswell and I hope you have a fantastic Christmas -and a brilliant new year

Lindy Miller Mind Cymru Manager for Participation and Inclusion