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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Regional Networking

Regional Networking

NSUN supports two regional developments that exist to strengthen local networking. These networks are in the South East and the North East. In each region a local service user group has been commissioned to develop the regional network. In the South East the Canterbury and District Mental Health Forum is leading the work and in the North East it is Launchpad through Mental Health North East.

NSUN does not duplicate the work of other local, regional or national service user led groups but works alongside them.

Regional networking:

  • Provides direct opportunities to share and obtain information on a day-to day basis.
  • Links individuals and groups so they can share resources and organise joint action and responses to improve the quality of service delivery.
  • Provides knowledge, information and broader perspectives that can be used as levers for change and influence at a strategic level.
  • Feeds into national initiatives, events and networks, which have included research in forensic services Sainsbury Centre, Care Quality Commission consultations, conferences (World Class Commissioning: Making An Impact, Keys To Power), training (Experiential Human Rights in Action, Leadership training), campaigning (Media Action Network South East, Time To Change and Open Up)
  • Supports collective and rapid responses to policy can be achieved through regional networks more effectively. Regional networks look both ways – rooted in current experience locally whilst developing an infrastructure.

North East regional network: North East Together

North East: Alistair Cameron launchpadncl@aol.com 0191 2330382

South East Champions

Following the South East Champions' programme for members in the South east region, from May to June 2011, participants have continued to meet together. Saira Walker has been coordinating the work, supporting Champions to network across the region.

NSUN consultation with Collective Voice North West

Collective Voice NW has been supported by Rethink and the University of Central Lancashire since July 2009. The contract comes to an end 31st March 2011. There has been a period of consultation since November 2010, which has sought the views of members regarding the value of the work and possible ways of continuing regional networking. A summary of the responses to the questionnaire and findings from the Focus Groups have been circulated by email and hard copy and can be read in full here.

In conclusion, there was a consensus on the value and potential strength of a regional network. The main findings from the feedback include:

  • CVNW should continue
  • There should be changes in how it is run
  • It should be service user and carer led and owned
  • It should build on what local groups are doing and work more closely with them
  • It needs to have ‘clout’ and influence decision makers
  • It needs to be well administered
  • Service users and carers need to have equal say and involvement in CVNW
  • More input and involvement of people from BME communities
  • NSUN has an infrastructure and experience in service user led networking to offer