The DIY Futures project, with its vision of learning in relation to mental health wellness and recovery, has helped enable an exciting new development in the acute in-patient mental health ward in Bronllys Hospital, Powys. Through funding agreed with The Big Lottery Fund, petitioned by the Powys Patients' Council, originally facilitated by Powys Mental Health Alliance and now developed and managed by Powys Association of Voluntary Organisations (PAVO), the new Centre (also known as the Quiet Room) opened its doors.
Powys Wellness and Recovery Centres aim to reinforce and develop people’s strengths. The new Centre will provide a peaceful and relaxing place where books and online information, supporting learning about our mental health, wellbeing and recovery, can be accessed by patients on the ward.
My colleague Freda Lacey, who has been key in liaising with the many different agencies involved in the project, told me more about the Centre:
"The room or centre has been under development for some time and patients, volunteers, ward staff and other agencies, which have been linked with the Lottery funded DIY Futures project, have all contributed to helping shape and develop the room. Match funding was contributed by The League of Friends and the Felindre Legacy Trust (charitable funds donated to the hospital) to help outfit the room with new flooring, and furniture. Books promoting recovery, people’s stories or lived experiences of living with mental distress, information on medication and other useful resources have been purchased for the room. Two laptops with internet access have been provided for patients in order to help with accessing online information such as local support groups and/or community mental health wellness and recovery learning centres. Training will be provided on how to use the laptops for writing and self-support."
|L - R: Mel Evans (Chairman Powys teaching Health Board), Philip Bowen (High Sheriff of Powys)|
Canst thou not minister to a mind diseas'd,
Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
Raze out the written troubles of the brain,
And with some sweet oblivious antidote
Cleanse the stuff'd bosom of that perilous stuff
Which weighs upon the heart?
Therein the patient
Must minister to himself.
Philip then spoke about the DIY Futures book “it’s the inside that matters”, a book that has “had me in tears”, adding that when seeking recovery “what better way than painting or writing about your problems.” He read extracts from the book, adding that it was very apt for the hospital setting. Many of the current patients and visitors on the day, who had not seen the book before, received their own personal copy to read. Future patients will have access to the book in the new room – and all agreed that there could not be a more useful and apt legacy of the DIY Futures project.
|The grand opening - visitors take a look around|
|L - R: Carla Rosenthal, (Powys Mental Health Alliance Magazine Editor), Penny Price (Ward Manager, Felindre Ward, Bronllys Hospital), Terry Hurford (Trustee Bronllys Hospital & Community League of Friends)|
- Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results.
- The only difference between a good day and a bad day is your attitude.
- Keep a green tree in your heart and perhaps a song bird will come.
- Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will.
- Make your optimism come true.
|L - R: Bill Fawcett (Vice Chair, Powys Mental Health Alliance), Andrew Hopkins (Senior Nurse, Mental Health Specialist Services, Aneurin Bevan Health Board)|
|L - R: Paul, Jill Dibling.|
|L - R: Jane Cooke (PAVO Mental Health Project Officer), Carl Cooper (PAVO Chief Executive Officer)|
|Terry Hurford (Trustee Bronllys Hospital & Community League of Friends), Kelvin Mills (Trustee, Powys Mental Health Alliance), Bill Fawcett (Vice Chair, Powys Mental Health Alliance)|
|Jan Chilton (Ponthafren Association 1-1 Worker)|