Families have long been neglected in service responses to people with mental health difficulties. However, for many people, reclaiming a ‘life worth living’ depends on having particular sorts of supportive relationships with significant others – which may not be easy given the stresses and anxieties that mental health issues can bring up for all concerned.
This Conference on 7 November 2013 which took place in Park House, University of Birmingham, offered an opportunity to share and discuss the latest research on different collaborative models by which service users and their family or close friends may be involved in enabling recovery from the disabilities that may be associated with mental distress. These included systemic and behavioural family therapy, family group conferencing, personal budgets and the Open Dialogue approach that has been pioneered in Finland.
The conference featured presentations of research findings from two research projects: Can whole family approaches contribute to the reablement of people with mental health difficulties? Funded by the NIHR School for Social Care Research and the PEOPLE study: Personalisation and severe mental illness. Funded by The Big Lottery. It also included workshops in which practitioners, service users and family members were able to share direct experience in relation to the different practice models that were being discussed.
Download the powerpoint presentation from Jerry Tew: Family Minded Practice and Mental Health (PDF)
This event was organised by the Family Potential Research Centre in conjunction with the Universities of Birmingham and Nottingham, the NIHR School for Social Care Research and Rethink Mental Illness.