Trowbridge has never really had a good Mental health service like all over the UK this is because the service has been starved of funds. This resulted in a shameful event about 3 years ago when those with mental illness that was not going to improve and not to much of a danger to themselves where removed from Mental Health Service and lost all support.
I started the group basically because mental health service via charities where time limited, or have a purpose such as get people off benefits and into work or had some way of measuring a person’s progress (to gain funding).
While I was under the MHT I would get a visit once a month to talk through issues and see what was available for me.
This once a month visit meant so much to me it kept me focused but once it was gone I was back alone isolated behind my door only leaving to go to the shop.
Very similar to current situation but this time no going to shop due to physical health condition.
As one of those people kicked of the MHT I knew what I needed which was somewhere the focus was social interaction and to reduce the isolation that I was now experiencing.
Now in the current situation their will be people who will be considering themselves as mental stable, experiencing for the first time Isolation and loneliness including those not alone and with family.
For the first time, maybe fear losing job or facing debt, relationship will be put under pressure and the grief of losing people to Covid 19 and their mental health will be put under so much pressure.
With an already depleted service the support will be difficult to access or due to sigma many people will not seek help before things become to bad.
People will therapy and medications and will have to learn to put their lives back together. As a peer run and lead group we use life experience and our knowledge to share information and tips to get the best out of life.
Our focus is building social skill , friendships and network of support that extend out from group sessions in to daily life. These are the key skill we lose when suffering from mental illness and although therapy can talk your problems out it only part of the healing process.
Medication can relieve symptoms again only part of the process. Decades ago social skills where part of mental health but due to the fact service where sold off and monetized and you can’t evaluate a persons social skill quickly or cheaply this is something that vanished from services.
Trowbridge Service Users Group provide that social aspect through different activities and group sessions and events. That network of support that has been build up by current members is very active in supporting each other during this current time.
And what is keeping me going is the group which current are carrying online in a private members group which is open to all members and is a great source of support in this time.
So, when this situation is over their will be lost of people who will be experiencing poor mental health and will have difficulties adjusting back to normality.
Hopefully their will be more services available but I do doubt it But I can promise that we will be opening again both in Trowbridge and in Westbury so stay up to date by following us on social media.
We will remain a free service that is Peer run and Lead that can be accessed just by walking in. We used lived experience to help each other make the best out of ourselves.
Please support us by making a small donation so we can provide the service that is need and will be need even more in times to come STAY SAFE AND STAY STRONG we here for you.