Tag Archives: carers forum

Lewisham MH Carers forum April 2018

Welcome back to my MH carer forum update from the Lewisham carers group. At the Lewisham Mental Health carer forum, we discuss carer engagement from our local mental health trust, 3 party organisations, the council and lewisham based GP surguries.

We also discuss carers rights, reports and learning about the carers role. For the april 2018 meeting. We discussed the report sent back from out local Mental health foundation trust, which is South London & Maudsley.

I usually attend and chair carer forums across South London, so it was important quality improvements for the mental health services get views from Carers. The report is fairly well written and easy to digest. I had printed out some copies for members to read at the Lewisham MH Carers forum.

We spent most of the time discussing the report, especially page 7 of the report, because that is where the write up of the carers forums were placed regarding carer issues. Despite the report being very easy to read, there were some problems. Some members felt the report was too vague and missed some things out. Other members of the Lewisham MH Carers forum felt the report is lacking in a conclusion on what needs to be done to tackle quality issues.

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One of the members of the forum is going to raise their concerns back at the trust, although I am glad the quality project did mention our concerns. We hope SLaMs Head of quality can engage with the forum regarding SLaMs quality priorites.

We also had a guest speaker at the forum who promises to return to the forum again. The head of the Ladywell Mental Health unit based at Lewisham Hospital engaged with the forum. I was delighted that she was able to make it, even though she had to deal with many emergency meetings. Sam Grey spoke about her role and what a Unit manager does. She described around 7 wards and their purpose and gave an update of changing service structures regarding borough based services rather than trust wide services.

I spoke about the need for a carer support group to be set up for the whole of the Unit, mainly because such a support group existed there years ago. Plus families and carers can always make the tuesday evening for a support group. I am fortunate enough to get support from the trust’s modern matrons who themselves focus on quality priorities. The forum wanted updates and engagement from the Ladywell Unit’s phamacist also the psychriatric nurse from Lewisham hospital, unfortunately we are not sure if it is possible to get their time, but the forum is interested on how such staff deal with medication issues and also how Lewisham hospital’s A&E engages with patients and their friends/families.

I hope the update was a useful read, see you next time.

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Lewisham MH Carers forum November

133Welcome to the November update of the Lewisham Mental Health carers forum for 2017. This will be the last forum for 2017 until January 2018. The carers forum has been running in Lewisham for some years now and there has been some minor problems, but many successes.

For the November forum on the agenda we had feedback from South London & Maudsley regarding carer queries from the October meeting. The patient information officer did a great job in notifying the involvement lead, information manager and engagement lead regarding carer queries.

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Southwark Mental Health Carers Forum September

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Welcome to Septembers Southwark Mental Health Carers Forum. Out of all the four Mental Health carer forums, This is one of the newer carer forums that has been set up to provide a platform for unpaid carers looking after someone suffering mental health problems in the London borough of Southwark.

To watch the video version, please click below

On the agenda for september was the following.

– An Update and discussion of what is going on in Southwark for MH carers
– brief feedback from the recent SLaM carers committee meeting.
– An update from Ana on her involvement at SLaM
– Discussion about the recent Southwark CCG engagement meeting
– Feedback on carer assessments meeting

As a group we discussed updates from August’s forum. Then moved on to what our local mental health trust is doing for its carers.

I presented the following being how South London & Maudsley’s carer committee’s development’s on their

  • Action Tracker
  • The new Terms of Reference/Code of Conduct which is to be approved
  • The New carer Co-Chair
  • An update on Carers Engagement and Support Plans Update
  • Translation of Carers Information
  • Addressing the issues that matter to Carers

Next was Ana’ who helps with the Southwark mental health carers forum, she presented on her involvement at the Patient and Carer’s involvement group. It is vital carers can attend the forum and learn about how empowered carers can be if they learn from involved carers at the trust.

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We then discussed the Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy patient engagement event held on the 11th September. Basically NHS Southwark Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Southwark Council aim to improve mental health and wellbeing across the borough and have now developed a draft Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy. They held an event to engage the public, patients and carers.

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We got some views from the carers who attend that event and they felt it was very good that we were heard, but felt the scenario’s presented bared little resemblance to their current situations and also felt that lack of money was behind the draft where the community was asked to do more for less.

As a forum, we wish for further engagement from Southwark CCG as we seek to find common themes among mental health carers.

Next up for discussion was the carer’s assessment meeting feedback. There is a feeling that not enough carers are being assessed and the process is too vague when it comes to who is responsible for doing the assessments. Plus there is no idea on the quality control when it comes to carers assessment in the borough of Southwark.

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Even if the outcome of an assessment does not rely on fiancial support, there should be docmentation on carer needs and carer engagement.

Carers Hub Lambeth Forum

Hi again. Welcome to another blog post by Matthew Mckenzie a mental health carer from Lewisham. It has been a while since my last blog post, I guess I have been so busy as of late. Since its the easter holidays I thought it would be a good time to write up a blog post on an event I go to every so often.

As noted in my other past carer blogs. I like to network with other carers in other boroughs of London and one of the best ways to do this is at carer organisations. One of the carer organisations I tend to visit is over in the borough of Lambeth. They usually have carer forums and on the 15th of March 2016, Carers Hub Lambeth held their forum which explored the use of creativity and relaxation for carers.

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My blog on Carers Hub Lambeth Forum July 2014

Welcome to another carer blog post from Matthew Mckenzie a carer for someone with mental health difficulties. Now although this blog aims to express my thoughts on the world of caring, I often like to go to events and learn more about mental health or how carers can empower themselves.

It has been a while since I have been to a carers forum, in fact to be honest I mainly attend mental health forums especially ones over in Croydon, which are run by the HearUs Reach Out Croydon organisation. At the back of my mind, I am thinking to myself it would be great to find out where there are carer forums, although HearUs is also aimed at carers as well.

I also wanted to see what other boroughs were doing for carers and luckily through the social media, Carers Hub Lambeth were advertising many of their meetings and forums, which I desperately wanted to attend.

Carers Hub Lambeth were also happy for me to blog about the forum, so more information can reach other carers out in the borough of Lambeth especially on those who do not know about the forum or the services Carers Hub Lambeth can provide for them.

Carers Hub Lambeth Forum

As you might already know, there are around 6.5 million carers in the UK, there are also around thousands of carers the Lambeth hub have on their database and there are more hidden carers struggling out there. It is critical more carers out there get the information and support they need to carry out their role or give carers greater freedom within their roles.

One of the best ways to empower carers is through a forum, especially one aimed at carers. On Thursday 10th July at 336 Brixton Road, SW9 7AA.

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We heard from Lianna Etkind, Campaigns Officer from TRANSPORT FOR ALL giving an update on options for carers and the people carers care for on transport. We then heard from David Strong from the Disability Advice Service Lambeth on the Lambeth Carers Awards – Carers were consulted on what do we want from this annual event in order to celebrate carers.

The Hub Manager of Carers Hub Lambeth “Julie Mallett” gave a great introduction to the carers forum. Julie is a carer herself and has a large wealth of knowledge and dedication to carer services.

Julie Mallett

Julie talked about the latest Carers Hub Lambeth Newsletter and the recent Carers charity walk that was done at the end of may 2014, which raised around £300 for much needed breaks and outings for other carers struggling for time out.

Carers charity walk

One of the updates Julie mentioned was the “Social Care hub steering group” meeting, the co-production of Lambeth services with Carers & Service Users taking place in April and the next newsletter to be sent out in September.

Newsletter

There was also updates from the last Carers Hub Lambeth forum, where carers requested the Lambeth Hub concentrate in training workshops for carers, produce more information on carers rights and many other things.

After a quick update from the last Carers Hub Lambeth forum, Lianna Etkind, Campaigns Officer from TRANSPORT FOR ALL gave us carers some information about what “Transport for All” is about.

Lianna Etkind

“Transport for All” believes in a fully accessible, reliable and affordable transport network for disabled and older Londoners. They provide specialised advice, information, advocacy and training to both service users and providers of accessible transport in the capital.

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Transport for All are based at 336 Brixton road, but feel free to view their website http://www.transportforall.org.uk/

Lianna Etkind told us about Transport For All latest campaign movements, but she also wanted to here from us carers the following questions.

1. If us carers had the resources and money, what would we do to change transport in London.
2. What as carers do we WANT from Transport

We discussed this as carers in each of our 7 groups and feedback to Lianna.

Matthew Mckenzie

I wanted cheaper travel for carers who cannot earn money so easily because they are busy caring for someone, the cost of travelling is increasing and effecting carers finances harder than ever. I also wanted to know if carers cannot get access to cheaper travel, then what benefits can carers take advantage of?

 

 

 

Other groups fed back on the following

– How can they get access to the Blue Badge pass
– How social workers should help people applying
– Cheaper travel
– Accessing transport without too much physical obstacles.

Lianna then took the time to talk about the following at the forum.

Map explanation

* Step free stations shown off the maps
* The difference between the what and blue wheelchair symbols on maps.
* The meaning of Ramps on the maps and their uses
* Uses of the “Taxi Card” and things to watch out for
* How to complain and also when to compliment about journeys
* Dial-a-ride booking
* The different types of freedom passes
* How “Transport for All” has done on their recent campaigns. Quite a lot of their campaigns have been done via the para-Olympics, plus their inquiry to the new Crossrail service.

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After the advice session from Lianna, we then got to watch a film about how cycling can help in physical health and well-being. The film was from a group called “Wheels for Well-being”. Their site is http://www.wheelsforwellbeing.org.uk/

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Wheels for Wellbeing is a charity supporting people of all ages in south London to enjoy the benefits of cycling, regardless of any physical or mental barriers they may experience.

Since 2007 they have supported thousands of people to cycle in London.

Abigail Tripp who is the Community Engagement Officer for “Wheels for wellbeing” told us carers about how “Wheels for Wellbeing” advise and consult those who attend their sessions. We also had some good questions from the attendees at the group on if the bikes could fold and why they had to move from Brockwell Park.

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One of the carers actually had been on their sessions and commented how they enjoyed the cycling benefits.

Next up was the Lambeth Carers Award. We had David Strong from the Disability Advice Service Lambeth present the following about the awards

David Strong

* What the “Lambeth Carers Awards” are all about
* How we need carers ideas on how the awards should be presented
* The different opinions other carers have mentioned about the awards

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Next we have another group session on discussing and feeding back our views about the Lambeth Carers Awards. Most carers tended to want the awards to be spread out and to allow recognition among more carers.

We all then had a large free lunch treated to us by Carers Hub Lambeth.

Yum!!

Then to burn off the food, some of the carers took part in the “Chair Zumba” provided by Annia Krystyna from the “Zumba Gold” whose site is http://www.zumba.gold.com

Chair Zumba

I decided to speak to Cecelia Tsang, the Carers Hub Advice Case Work who is from “Age UK Lambeth“. I spoke to her about what things carers wanted help with the most and she mentioned it is usually about housing, benefits, charity access, advice and complaints.

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Next I went for a massage session to help relieve any stress or tension since as a carer myself, I have been going through a difficult period.

Massage

My last thoughts about the forum is that I hope more spring up around the other boroughs in London and I am sure to attend a few more.

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I can only hope and wish carers take advantage of these forums, so they know what is going on, how they can contribute or benefit from the forums and be part of the community, which not only helps carers provide care, but extend the philosophy that caring communities bring us all together.

So no carer is left isolated.