NSUN network for mental health is an independent, service-user-led charity that connects people with experience of mental health issues to give us a stronger voice in shaping policy and services.

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2014 summary of work

NSUN's vision is to create a strong, sustainable and influential network of individuals and groups of mental health service users and survivors who are communicating and supporting each other.

With over 4000 members we are continuing to stride towards our vision and survive beyond the many statutory and political changes we face.

We've provided a summary of work achieved from January to December 2014 - an 'at a glance' month by month list.

January 2014

  • Produced a joint statement setting out the core principles: Interim statement on Peer Support Standards, Business Practices and Peer Led Principles
  • Supported members to meet with Metropolitan Police Chief Inspector Daniel Thorpe, to discuss expanding police training on mental health
  • Invited to sit on the panel at the Launch of the new report London Mental Health – The Invisible Costs of Mental Ill Health
  • Supported the launch of the Time To Change event for the ‘300 Voices’ project
  • Supported the launch of the UKCP report about the value of good mental health and effective interventions
  • Invited to join the Mental Health Intelligence Network - a joint NHS England and Public Health England initiative
  • Presented at the launch of the CQC Mental Health Act report
  • The Leicester Leadership programme, facilitated by Debby Kline a participant on the 2012/2013 London Leadership programme was completed.
  • Facilitated three consultation workshops for the Lankelly Chase 'Ethnic Inequalities in mental Health' consultation.

February 2014

  • Facilitated the Commissioning reference group, looking at developing a service user Values-based Commissioning guide.
  • Held a joint event with Mind in Sheffield.
  • Facilitated service user and carer meetings as part of the tendering selection process for Bristol Clinical Commissioning Group mental health and dementia services
  • Facilitated the final ‘Mapping Integrated Care Pathways’ service user panel meeting.
  • Presented at the Time To Change round table event for stigma within services.
  • Delivered a training session ‘Alternative Ways’  to Clinical Psychology students.
  • Co-produced the service user led conference for Healthcare events
  • Supported the first Mindapples training programme.

March 2014

  • Provided evidence to the Parliament Health Select Committee for the post-legislative scrutiny of the Mental Health Act 2007
  • Invited to continue on the Care Quality Commission’s Mental Health Act Annual Report Advisory Group.
  • The report Ethnic Equalities in Mental Health: Promoting Lasting Positive Changepublished following the consultation commissioned by Lankelly Chase.
  • Voluntary sector Strategic Partner Programme (SPP) confirmed, £25,000 received for Mental Healthwatch and Mapping Integrated Care Pathways.
  • Continued distribution of the Peer Led Peer Support Collaboration Interim Statement.
  • Application successful,  to host one of the International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL) exchanges ‘Consumer Leaders and Peer Services’ in partnership with Together, for over 20 international Exchange participants.
  • Completed the facilitated ‘Mapping Integrated Care Pathways’ expert reference group meetings and the production of a ‘service user’ definition of integrated care pathways.
  • Mental Healthwatch event and launch of Mental Healthwatch Handbook’.
  • Launch of the Values-based Commissioning Guide: Influencing Mental Health Services’
  • Funding confirmed for the evaluation of the Mindapples training programme pilot Mental Effectiveness at Work. University of York asked NSUN to lead the recruitment and ongoing support of participants
  • Supported and attended Hackney Event “Innavision” LoudMinorityfilm screening with Peoples Network and 4Sight members.
  • Final report submitted to the Neurological Commissioning Support Mentoring Project.
  • Presented at NHS England Mental Health Tariff Stocktake event.
  • Presented at the South London Health innovation Network.
  • Invited to be a member of the Parity of Esteem Stakeholders Group.
  • Supported graduates of the Leicester Leadership Programme to present at the Leicester City Council Mental Health summit.
  • Language document produced following online survey exploring preferred terms amongst the NSUN membership
  • Service user involvement policy document completed
  • Attended the second Women’s Mental Health Network development meeting
  • Presented at the South London Health Innovation Network
  • Completed the Bristol Clinical Commissioning Group service user and carer consultation meetings for the retendering of mental health community services.

April 2014

  • Negotiated a contract (£6,300) with the London Strategic Clinical Network to provide advice and guidance around patient and public involvement for the Mental Health Clinical Commissioning Group leads.  
  • Invited to contribute and comment on the CentreForum Mental Health Commission interim report.
  • Contributed to the ‘Extending Choice in Mental Health’ guidance consultation, as a key stakeholder.
  • Invited to be a member of the steering group for the Mental Health Intelligence Network (MHIN) put together by NHS England and Public Health England.
  • Mental Healthwatch Handbook sent to all 152 local Healthwatch organisations, Guardian article gained 120 comments and nearly 350 tweets.
  • Agreed to be the mental health partner for the NDTi ‘Research for Impact: Disabled people’ programme.
  • Invited to have a stand at the National Psychosis Conference.
  • Briefed Chuka Umunna MP on mental health issues.
  • Invited to be a panel member for Together’s National Steering Group recruitment process.
  • Presented at Warwick University Research and Development workshop.
  • Invited to the Shaping Our Loves launch of ‘Beyond the Usual Suspects’.
  • Agreed continued membership of the ‘Peer2Peer’ steering group.
  • Facilitated the quarterly Involvement Workers’ Peer Support group.
  • Distributed Survivor Researcher Network survey results.
  • Invitation to be a member of the steering group for Mind’s Peerfest 2014 event.
  • Invited to be a member of the National Co-production Advisory Group to produceNo Assumptions – A Narrative for Personalised, Coordinated Care and Support in Mental Health’ with Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) and other organisations including Mind, Rethink Mental Illness and Certitude.

May 2014

  • Secured funding from the Maudsley Charity for the International event ‘Service User leadership and Peer Support Festival’
  • Facilitated a members’ open meeting with the Ministerial Advisory Group representatives.
  • Confirmed as a partner in the British Institute of Human Rights successful application to the Department of Health (IESD) award.
  • Presented with the Ministerial Advisory Group with service user and carer representatives.
  • Distributed the ‘Top Ten Issues’ arising from the 2013 annual members’ survey.
  • Agreed continued membership of the Disability Action Alliance steering group.
  • Presented at Community Care Live conference.
  • Attended Mental Health Alliance quarterly meeting, raising issues to support the campaign “Stop Coercion” to improve respect for the rights of individuals.

June 2014

  • Produced the London Leadership short film.
  • Produced the Involvement Briefing in partnership with Together.
  • Held the soft launch of the 4PI national involvement standards at Service User leadership and Peer Support Festival event.
  • Presented, facilitated a workshop and organised a stall and display at the IIMHL conference in Manchester.
  • Attended the Interrelate (international consumer network) meeting in Manchester as one of the English representatives.
  • Presented at the launch of the Mental Health Intelligence Network.
  • Invited to UKCP Commissioning Round Table event.
  • Collaboration with Healthcare Conferences to run the Creating Connections: Service User Involvement Conference held at the ICO London in June 2014. All the news and presentations can be accessed online here.
  • Presented on 4PI involvement standards and Values-based Commissioning (VbC) at St Catherine’s College, Oxford.
  • Presented at Warwickshire Community and Voluntary Action event.
  • Presented, facilitated and produced a report ‘From coercion to co-production in supervision and care planning: the principles and values under-pinning non-coercive decision making in Health and Social Care workshop, Cambridge University.
  • Presented 4PI involvement standards to NHS England Strategic Clinical Network CCG Leadership Group.

July 2014

  • Presented at the launch of the CentreForum’s commission report ‘The Pursuit of Happiness’.
  • Collaboration with Healthcare Conferences to run Values-based Commissioning conference in Manchester.
  • Published the summary report of the 2013 annual NSUN membership survey.
  • NSUN member Nicky Morgan MP appointed as Secretary of State for Education by the Prime Minister.
  • Attended Healthwatch Sheffield event as follow up to Mental Healthwatch launch.
  • Presented at the North East Together event, launching their newsletter and Welfare Reform Action Group (WRAG).
  • Presented 4PI standards for involvement  at the launch of NHS England London: Mental Health Primary Care Commissioning Guide.
  • Invited to have a stand at the NHS England Mental Health Primary Care Commissioning Guide Launch.
  • Invited to be a panel member for the Health Service Executive Service User and Carer Reference Group in Ireland.
  • Facilitated the recruitment process to the Lankelly Chase Ethnic Inequalities Lived Experience Advisory Group.
  • Attended and participated in UK Premier event of Mars Project: a fundraising and consciousness raising event on behalf of the Hearing Voices Network in Hackney.
  • Participated in the Lankelly Chase BME Strategy Round Table event.
  • Supported Manchester Users Network to positively challenge Manchester Mental Health Trust's Patient and Public Involvement in Research Strategy 2014.
  • Facilitated visioning session for the South West Mental Health Alliance.
  • Supported the updating of the Interrelate website.

August 2014

  • Commissioned by Healthwatch England to organise and facilitate a focus group for their Special Inquiry into Unsafe Discharge of People with Mental Health Conditions.
  • Facilitated Hackney’s Peoples’ Network meeting.
  • Invited to be a panel member for Mind’s Peer Support grants programme.
  • Approached by Turning Point to explore partnership working.
  • Presented at International Conference, Qualitative Research Methods in Mental Health (QRMH5) in Chania, Crete.
  • Contributed to initial consultation for Lankelly Chase involvement strategy.
  • Facilitated 4PI involvement standards Creative Day.
  • Meeting with Rethink Mental Illness to discuss 4PI involvement standards.
  • Invited to be an external expert advisor for the Government’s current review of the operation of Sections 135 and 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 – response submitted.

September 2014

  • Invited to participate in the strategic consultation for the NHS Mandate as part of a high level policy group.
  • Facilitated quick response to Department of Health request to comment on the Five Year plan ‘Achieving Better Access to Mental Health Services by 2020’.
  • Co-ordinated a collective response to the Mental Health Act (1983) Code of Practice consultation.
  • Published article in response to mental health manifestos for Mental Health Today
  • Presented at West London Mental Health Trust Coproduction day on The Personal is Political: the use of Coercion, Control and Restraint: in secondary mental health services.
  • Supported Leicester Leaders to present to the Leicester Mental Health Partnership Board.
  • Two chapters written for October’s edition of Mental Health Today: a Handbook for Mental Health.
  • Held our third annual Team and Trustee Development Day.
  • Collective response to the Department of Health's Waiting Time standards consultation.

October 2014

  • Delivered a Mental Healthwatch session to the East Midland Healthwatch network.
  • Obtained probono support from the Cranfield Trust.
  • Attended Deputy Prime Minister's World Mental Health Day reception.
  • Presented at the Capita Conference, Transforming Mental Health Inspections.
  • Joined the National Voices Wellbeing Our Way Steering Group.
  • Presented at MCCH's User Involvement event.
  • Supported the 300 Voices event in Birmingham.
  • Held our third Team and Trustee development day.
  • Supported Leicester Leaders to present at Mental Health Board.
  • Presented at London Metropolitan University.

November 2014

  • Supported the Think Ahead consultation event.
  • Invited onto the panel for the Helpline Partnership awards.
  • Presented at the College of Social Work event.
  • Attended and presented at the Involve Conference.
  • Presented at the Lewisham Mental Health and Wellbeing Day
  • Supported the Peerfest 2014 event.
  • Facilitated a session for the NHS England GP Leadership Programme.
  • Promoted and presented at the National Crisis Care Concordat Summit.

December 2014

  • Attended the SCIE Co-production Network meeting.
  • Facilitated the Involvement Workers Peer Support group.
  • Attended the National Voices Round Table event with Simon Stevens.
  • Facilitated the National Involvement Partnership Advisory Group.
  • Signed an open letter from British Institute of Human Rights, published in the Daily Telegraph published in the Daily Telegraph, calling on "those with power to stand with us to respect human rights laws".
  • Attended the All Party Parliamentary Group for Social Work on the State of Mental Health Social Work.
  • Published the 4PI Blog by Alison Faulkner.
  • Supported the second Mindapples training programme.
  • Attended the Greater London Assembly World Mental Health Day event.
  • Worked in partnership with North East Together (NEt) to plan the North East Leadership programme.


All the above is a summary of the highlights and doesn't include individual work and general support and information sharing with members.

You can view all our previous ebulletins here and editions of Network here.