Training delivered for Recovery Practitioners

Twelve newly-appointed Recovery Practitioners whose role is to enable individuals to improve their personal resilience to manage their mental health challenges have benefitted from bespoke training from Recovery Devon, a Community Interest Company at the forefront of the recovery movement in mental health.

Recovery Devon employs those with lived experience and one of its core aims is to champion the voice of lived experience in the mental health sector including in the co-production of its training.

The half day workshop delivered by Managing Director Hilda Kalap and Community Development Worker Sami Goulding covered the history of the recovery movement from its roots in human rights and disabilities activism with an understanding that recovery does not necessarily mean ‘getting better’ but still being able to live a life full of meaning, regardless of symptoms.

Hilda Kalap, Managing Director said: “At the heart of recovery is that individuals feel they have hope, choice and opportunity in their lives.”

The training also explained the latest research into different types of trauma and the impact of adverse childhood experiences on an individual.

Course participants all work for the new Devon Mental Health Alliance made up of six organisations including Step One, Devon Mind and Shekinah.

Recovery Practitioners have a broad range of senior expertise with backgrounds ranging from health and social care, teaching, counselling and mental health. They work with people with severe mental illness and complex needs by providing 1:1 practical and emotional support via face-to-face, telephone, email, and video conferencing platforms. The approach is solutions-focused assisting individuals to overcome a range of barriers.

The role includes preparing and co-producing actions plans – such as Wellness Recovery Action Plans – to enable individuals to improve their personal resilience to manage their mental health challenges.

Crucially by taking a holistic approach they can factor in the impact of debt, poor housing, unemployment, homelessness, loneliness, and caring responsibilities on someone’s mental health.

Ed Foreman, Alliance Locality Manager, said: ‘It is incredibly important to us that we are drawing on the resources and experience available across the Devon VCSE sector. The chance to experience some training from Recovery Devon was too good to pass up. The manner in which this was delivered was tailored perfectly to our service’s needs and the passion shown by the trainers was there for all to see. The Principles of Recovery are something talked about by many organisations but are we really aware of them and are they embedded fully in our working practices? I like to think we have taken a huge step towards defining our ways of working for the better and recommend others to do the same.”

About the Devon Mental Health Alliance

The Devon Mental Health Alliance has been commissioned through the Community Mental Health Framework to help transform the county’s approach to mental health, by supporting greater connectivity between the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector and statutory partners.

The Alliance is passionate about developing and delivering services in partnership with experts by experience, families, carers, and statutory and VCSE agencies – services that will have the best outcomes for people facing significant challenges in their lives. It is appointing a team of Recovery Practitioners with the right skills and experience to be at the forefront of this delivery.