Many of the issues facing people with mental illness from black and minority ethnic groups (BME) are the same as their white British counterparts. Stigma, difficulties in everyday life such as problems with housing, being accepted by friends and family and finding or keeping work, are all issues that are commonly reported by those with mental health difficulties regardless of culture and background. Mental health problems associated with physical illness can increase healthcare costs by more than 45% according to some international studies, which, if applied to NHS expenditure could mean that £8-13 billion of long-term physical health care costs are due to poor mental health. As part of the Let’s Talk Consortium Rochdale Women’s Welfare Association has been tackling health inequalities by delivering emotional wellbeing support for BME women in Rochdale, Heywood and Middleton. As partners of the Lets Talk Consortium we have been able to work together to share skills, experiences and resources as well as support each other within this project. The Consortium has in kind made saving of £1300 for accessing our venue to deliver training such as the bereavement training and to hold meetings, volunteers time in total 777hrs based on the six months the social value of saving is £5439.
Consortium we have been able to work together to share skills, experiences and resources as well as support each other within this project
- We received funding from the CCG in April 2014 to be part of Let’s Talk Project partnership.
- Our 4 staff and 2 volunteers have gained an accredited qualification in Counselling and Listening skills (level 2) this allows them to work as bereavement support volunteers.
- Through our work we recognised that bereavement and mental health is on the increase in the BME communities but no suitable support service is available.
- Within our Let’s Talk project the team decided that this service was much needed, thus, our staff and volunteers have gained the qualification. Ten volunteers will also receive training in level 2 in listening skills so that they can support women in our befriending scheme which will begin in the New Year.
- The project will support anyone bereaved or struggling with issues of loss and grief. RWWA specifically will be supporting BME women to access the bereavement support, counselling and befriending service