.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Monday, June 22, 2009

Good in a crisis

It is that time of year again when the National Lottery singles out some of the exceptional projects that it has funded and asks people to vote on the best of them. Already I am getting e-mails from the shortlisted candidates asking me for my vote and to spread the word about their good cause.

I will most probably resist the temptation but with one exception and that is Gofal Cymru's Community Crisis House. This scheme is pioneering an alternative to hospital admission for people in mental health crisis. It is an important element in the recovery model of mental health care, that seeks to help people recover from their illness within familiar settings rather than relying on drugs to control it.

The Crisis House is just an ordinary, four-bedroomed house. Individuals, referred by health services, have their own bedrooms and share a community living area and kitchen. Being in a comfortable, non-medical environment makes a big difference and nine out of ten people are able to avoid hospital admission and return home after just seven days.

In addition to medical support from NHS staff, Crisis House staff try to help residents identify the factors that led to their crisis, which could include housing, employment, education, physical, emotional and social aspects of their lives. Advice on relevant issues, such as healthy eating or accessing social networks, is provided, and each resident leaves with a pack of information identifying useful services and other support options.

Support and information is also provided for family and friends, who say they much prefer the homely setting. Gofal Cymru is working to raise awareness among policy makers of the importance of community crisis prevention, and is hoping to pave the way for more Crisis Houses to open in Wales.

Update: I have now voted for Ferndale Skate Park in the best sports project category and Mencap's Partner in Politics scheme under the Best Charity/Voluntary project category.
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?