RPBG celebrates recovery-focused care

Photo of staff members at expo
Rachel Stubbs and Carli Sheers.
October 26, 2018

During Mental Health Week 2018, Bentley Hospital staff and lived experience representatives rallied together to show their support for mental wellbeing and recovery at the Royal Perth Bentley Group Service 3 Mental Health Expo, held on Friday 12 October.

RPBG Lived Experience Advisory Group Co-chairs Carli Sheers, Lived Experience Representative, and Rachel Stubbs, Community Development Officer, Mental Health Quality and Governance Support Unit brought staff, lived experience representatives and community organisations together to celebrate and promote recovery-focused care.

The expo aimed to educate staff on the many community services available for mental health consumers who still need further support as they continue on their personal recovery journey after leaving hospital. Some of the organisations that attended the expo included Richmond Wellbeing and Ruah Community Services.

Carli Sheers explained that the relationship between RPBG Service 3 staff and community organisations is a critical element in linking people with the right services to ensure they are empowered to lead a more fulfilling life and prevent readmission to hospital.

“The expo was a good opportunity for staff to meet living examples of recovery as well as learn more about the services available after discharge. Often staff see people when they are acutely unwell and it must be hard when they don’t get the opportunity to meet people like me who have gone on to recover and lead a fulfilling life,” Carli said.

“By linking in with organisations like Grow I was able to continue my recovery journey once I left the hospital and it has been very rewarding for me to have the opportunity to support other people that have experienced, or are experiencing mental health issues.”

“Often it is the case that a person may have reached clinical recovery but they still need help to link in with community services or organisations that will provide that wrap around support and help with things like housing and employment.”

“Employment is an indicator of health and a passport to a good life. Many people have gone on to have relationships, improved relationships with their family and are taking part in meaningful activity during the day and evening.”

“It’s really about helping people take the first step so they don’t end up back as a voluntary or involuntary patient and increasing staff knowledge of support services to encourage inclusion of assisted referrals in treatment discharge plans,” Carli said.

Events such as this highlight the significance of mental health issues and provide opportunities to check in with colleagues, patients and consumers all in support of good mental health. Mental Health Week was held from 8 to 12 October 2018 and celebrated the theme “Mental Health starts where we live, learn, work and play”.