We are working with local mental health charity Derbyshire Mind to give bilingual training – in Punjabi and English – to volunteers from Derby’s Indian community, so they can spot the signs and symptoms of common mental health problems and advise others in the community about how to get help.
In partnership with the SEWA group based at the Indian Community Centre on Rawdon Street, Normanton, representatives from the trust and Derbyshire Mind are delivering the nationally accredited training on Friday 18 July and Friday 25 July, with the aim that the volunteers - many community group leaders - can then help the local community to understand mental health and ‘signpost’ people to the right health services. Research shows that recovery rates are higher and quicker when people are able to seek help for mental health problems at an early stage.
Derbyshire Healthcare has a strong track record of reaching out to all the different communities it serves. In 2013, we were named ‘organisation of the year’ by the LGBT charity Derbyshire Friend for our “innovative ways of working and engaging with community groups” and our “passion and enthusiasm for improving people’s lives”; our therapists run monthly drop-in sessions at Derbyshire Friend’s headquarters in Derby. Earlier this year, we became the first NHS trust in Derbyshire to sign the British Deaf Association’s BSL (British Sign Language) Charter, to show our commitment to equality for Deaf people, and we were selected by NHS Employers as one of their Equality and Diversity Partners for 2014-15 as a result of its successful community engagement.
We commissioned the Mental Health First Aid training – a course developed by Mental Health First Aid England – as part of the implementing of our Time to Change pledge to tackle stigma and improve access to its services for seldom-heard groups. The training will also be delivered to members of the Deaf community in October, in partnership with the British Deaf Association.
Wendy Beer, Chief Executive of Derbyshire Mind, says: “Derbyshire Mind is delighted to be working with Derbyshire Healthcare and the Indian Community Centre SEWA group to deliver Mental Health First Aid Training to community volunteers. The team of 20 volunteers will learn how to recognise the signs and symptoms of a range of common mental health problems and how to offer practical support and signposting to members of the community. This is an exciting partnership initiative which will benefit both the volunteers and community alike.”
Harinder Dhaliwal, Derbyshire Healthcare’s Assistant Director of Engagement and Inclusion, says: “We are thrilled to be teaming up with Derbyshire Mind and the Indian Community Centre SEWA group to provide this training. We hope that it will empower the volunteers to help and advise others in their community, and give them the confidence to spread the word that seeking treatment for mental health problems is just as important as seeking treatment for physical ones.”