Bipolar diary – finding out more about being a linkworker & I found a bipolar support group

I’ve been playing around a bit with blog options and stuff and I went ahead and scheduled a couple of posts that should, if I’ve done it right, be posted later on tonight. I mention it because in both I talk about how in the future I want to be able to help people without really knowing ultimately what capacity that will be in. Well tomorrow I’m having an informal chat to discuss one avenue that I could go down in that regard. It’s called linkworking and the basic premise behind what linkworkers do is –

The team of Hear Us Linkworkers are all current or ex service users who have been through their own mental health issues and used local services to support their recovery.   Using their experiences to help others, the Linkworkers are committed to support positive mental health in Croydon by supporting you and helping to develop services that get you the help you need, as and when you need it.

The specific details of what this equates to is below –

What do the Linkworkers do?

The main role of the Linkworker is to act as a link between staff and service users and support services to improve based on the needs and issues you face when you’re using services.   Our main role is to:

  • Listen: We are here to listen to you and not to judge you.  Having had our own mental health problems, we know how helpful it is to have someone to talk to in confidence.  As Linkworkers, we want to give you a safe space to talk about any issues you have without any fear of repercussions, so that you can get the help you need to feel better.
  • Support: If you have an issue or something is worrying you, we are here to support you and try to help you get the issues resolved.  To do this, we can either support you to raise your issue yourself, or we can raise your issues on your behalf, anonymously or directly, depending on what you prefer.
  • Signpost: Sometimes what’s on your mind might be something that we can’t help with directly but we can usually point you in the direction so that you can get help.  For example, you might be worried about benefits or you might want some support to find work.  In these cases, we can usually let you know about other organisations that are available to help.

 It looks to me to be a good opportunity to get involved in an area that I’m quickly becoming accustomed to and which I think I can hopefully be of some use.

Bipolar support group

I thought I’d take a look to see if there were any support groups in my area and it turned it there was. They meet every month and this Thursday is the March meeting –
Group: Croydon
Meeting Date: 3rd Thursday of every month
Meeting Time: 7.30pm – 9.30pm
Info: At the next meeting on March 19 2015, Kirsty Treadwell from Bipolar UK will be speaking about the Link Mentoring Service and an overview of information available from Bipolar UK
Venue: The Primary Room of The United Reformed Church, Addiscombe Grove, Croydon. [5 minutes from E.Croydon]

It just so happens that someone there is talking about linkworking as well, although it says link mentoring which I guess is different. In any case I’ll be going along and seeing what it’s like and see who is in the group etc.

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