Mental Health Together (MHT) was set up in 2017 to give mental health service receivers and carers a greater say in the services they access; ensuring they are listened to and that their experiences are at the heart of service design and delivery.
From May 2018 the service was in danger of coming to an end due to the withdrawal of funding from Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group as part of their Financial Recovery Plan. However, thanks to the dedication of former Healthwatch Derbyshire CEO Karen Ritchie, and the devotion of service receiver and carer volunteers, MHT will be able to see out the remainder of its three-year contract to March 2020, albeit with a lot less funding.
Due to the reduction in funding MHT is continuing with a much smaller team and has said a fond farewell to Darren Greenwood and Claire Reece (Engagement Officers) and to Dawn Robinson (Team Leader).
Future work will be continued by two part-time Involvement Officers, Niki Glazier and Kath Dawson, both of whom were members of the original team and therefore well placed to build upon the positive work carried out in the first year of the contract.
In its new format Mental Health Together will mainly be responsible for:
- Recruiting, training and supporting Experts by Experience, both mental health service receivers and their carers.
- Identifying, and where appropriate facilitating, opportunities for Experts by Experience to be involved in the design and delivery of health and social care services.