Community Connectors Success
Our Community Connector Service (CCS) had its first commissioners review recently and we’re delighted that they were really pleased with how the service was bedding in and starting to evolve with more face-to-face interaction.
Commissioners loved the service user stories that had been provided; seeing real outcomes was very important to them. Here are a couple of real-life stories from our CCS team who work with people with mental health issues who are just leaving primary care. The team support people such as these two, below, in the community:
Service user X suffers from OCD and does not allow anyone to enter his home; even his own family has not been able to visit him. Michelle, from our CCS team, has been able to build up enough trust with him through her phone calls, that he actually invited her in so they could do some support.
Before Community Connectors, X had been on long-term medicated meal drinks as he has not been eating at all due to his mental health; with Michelle’s support he has signed up to meal on wheels and is now getting hot meals delivered 5 days a week, which he is eating. Michelle went to his home to do an assessment on his mobility and safety – due to his very low weight he is very unstable. She is now sending referrals to occupational health to get X a rail in his bathroom and also a walking aid to get him around his home.
Michelle has sent X some self-help booklets on OCD and other mental health conditions for him to read and she will continue to help him with that. He texted Michelle after the visit to say that he has now invited his son to go round and enter his home, which is massive progress. Michelle hopes to move this on to getting him to come to our group sessions when we start them up.
Michelle also visited Y & Z and helped them with their paperwork and benefits. Y hasn’t left her house for some time, so having a coffee with Michelle in a public place was a big achievement for her.
Another story which shows the type of work the CCS team do is that of W who they have been working with since August:
W suffers terribly with anxiety and is waiting to have a transition operation. There are lots of things that interest her, but she just does not have the confidence to go out on her own and try new things.
After talking to W and realising what kind of things that she is interested in, our team did some research and found a café in Ipswich called Geek Retreat that she might like to visit; it’s a place where she can meet like-minded people, feel safe , grab some lunch and play board games, computer games and eventually attend specialist events. After they discussed it all and sent over the website to W, she was able to do her own research and look into it herself. She agreed that this is somewhere that she would really like to go, so they have made a plan to visit in the near future and are working towards going there for lunch together. It will take further steps to get there; they will be meeting for a coffee locally first then build up to make the train journey there together until W eventually feels that this is somewhere she can visit on her own.
Well done to all the team, including the amazing volunteers we have working on the service – you are really Connecting Communities!