Norfolk mental health service aims to provide the best support possible

Paul Farmer, centre, national Mind CEO, cuts the ribbon to open Norwich Mind's new Wellbeing Centre

Paul Farmer, centre, national Mind CEO, cuts the ribbon to open Norwich Mind's new Wellbeing Centre at Norwich Cathedral Close. From left, Norwich Mind CEO, Amanda Hedley; patron William Armstrong; patron Lady Dannatt; and chairman of the trustees, Kevin Long. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

A service aimed at offering specialist support for common mental health problems has a new base right in the heart of the community it helps.

Norwich Mind's new Wellbeing Centre at Norwich Cathedral Close. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich Mind's new Wellbeing Centre at Norwich Cathedral Close. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

The Wellbeing service, which is run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) in partnership with three Norfolk MIND organisations and Relate, was relaunched last year to help more people with conditions such as stress, anxiety and depression.

In the subsequent two months, 4,270 people received treatment – a 35% increase on the 3,166 figure from 2014.

Yesterday, as the service was officially launched at Norwich Forum by North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, its Central Norfolk Hub was also unveiled, just a few yards from Norwich Cathedral, in The Annex, on Holland Court.

It, along with the West Norfolk Hub, in Providence Street Community Centre, King's Lynn and the East Norfolk Hub, in the Oaktree Centre, Northgate Street, Northgate Hospital, Great Yarmouth, offers a range of help, including talking therapies, one-to-one support, courses, workshops and social events.


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Unveiling the Norwich hub, Paul Farmer, national chief executive of Mind, said: 'This is a great example of everybody working together to make sure we can provide the best service possible for those with a mental health condition.'

Nesta Reeve, consultant clinical psychologist and clinical lead at NSFT, added: 'Conditions such as stress, anxiety and depression can have a major impact on individuals and their families, so our focus is on helping people at an early stage, before their problems become too great.'

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Lady Dannatt MBE, patron of the Norwich and Central Norfolk branch of Mind, which owns the Norwich hub building, said: 'I think this facility will be of great benefit to local people, it just helps to bring the problem out of the shadows a bit.'

If you or someone you know would like help from the service, they can speak to their GP or self-refer by visiting www.wellbeingnandw.co.uk or by calling 0300 123 1503.

Do you have a mental health story for our campaign? Email david.powles@archant.co.uk

Mind boss says mental health is now more out in the open

Mental health is being more readily talked about in communities, the next challenge is to make sure those that suffer conditions receive the best service possible.

That was the verdict of Paul Farmer, national chief executive of Mind, who also had praise for this paper's Mental Health Watch campaign for putting the issue on the agenda.

He said: 'We have seen great strides in terms of getting mental health out into the open. That is where the campaign is so helpful, to really open up the conversation so we can see the true scale of the problem. The next stage is for everyone to see mental health as a society wide issue so we can all work together to get to the right place.'

On the Norfolk and Suffolk Trust being in special measures and high rates of serious incidents and unexpected deaths, he added: 'I am aware of the issues in this region, but we do need to remember that projects like this today show there is good work being done and a lot of hard working staff are doing the best they can.

'But it is vital the trust is able to make sure people can get the right support at the right time.

'The serious incidents and deaths are a concern, but firstly we must realise that for a long time there has not been a lot of transparency about this type of thing and that is changing.

'Secondly, as a charity we have been calling for a system to be put in place where every unexpected death, not just those that go to an inquest, is properly and fairly investigated so loved ones can be assured they get the truth about what happened and that lessons are being learned where need be.'

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