Blog

28 Aug

Northern Healthcare announces community initiative Northern Soul

 

Northern Healthcare support people who are on the pathway to recovery and who have mental health challenges. We help them realise their potential and regain their independence in order to become an active member of society again. Often a key part to recovery and rehabilitation is society, and how people within the local and wider community accepts residents just like ours. Therefore, we want to build links within the local community and foster a progressive relationship which has allowed the development of our new community engagement initiative “Northern Soul”

Northern soul is a community based initiative to educate and promote mental health awareness within local businesses and residents. We aim to reduce stigma, provide social inclusion opportunities for our service users and forge positive community links so to allow inclusive collaboration within a supportive framework. In order to do this we are offering free training workshops and resources, a community champion panel made up of Shipley residents and Service Users to organise and celebrate mental health across Shipley. The aim of the scheme is to provide Safe Outer Unit Locations that our service users can access without feeling stigmatized but instead empathised with. The scheme will hopefully connect agencies and projects so that there is more of a pathway through Shipley services, where our experts by experiences can give positive feedback as to how to make a community business more mental health aware. We also offer support to business to recognise mental health needs in colleagues and how to aid and promote recovery.

Jordanna Hirst, Service Manager says “The reason for coming up with Northern Soul, was due to many years working within the forensic mental health hospitals across the North West and seeing the Us and Them culture of taking service users out in to the community to access a facility or activity, but always standing out and appearing different. Assumptions and judgements are always going to be part of curiosity, but rather than allowing people to assume and make wrong judgements we want to celebrate individualism, reduce stigma, educate and bring together people from all back grounds to  take ownership of their community. Equipping people with the knowledge in a safe, supportive environment, reduces anxieties, encourages positive therapeutic relationships and creates a positive living harmony.”

The first of our events is Curry and Chaat evening at Merchants House on Wednesday 29th August at 5:30pm. We aim to bring together local businesses, show what we do and show that mental health is not something that needs to be hidden away.

If you would like more information or wish to be a part of Northern Soul please contact jordanna.hirst@northernhealthcare.org.uk or call us on 01274 952170