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HISTORY OF THE GROUP

Following the South East Development Centre (SEDC) Capacity Building Initiative, people were invited to attend a Leadership course funded by SEDC from across the South East. To date, there have been two Leadership programmes and the third Leadership programme is currently running.


Some participants decided to continue to meet together and formed a South East service users’ group called the Dream Team. Members of the group who come from Kent wanted to have a Kent specific meeting to look at local issues in more detail. It was decided that another meeting open to other people using mental health services in Kent should be arranged so ideas, experiences and good practice could be shared.

AIMS OF THE GROUP:


WHAT DO WE WANT TO SEE IN KENT?

Some of the issues raised and discussed:

· Having an independent service user voice

· Having funding for service-user-led activity

· Taking our own agenda forward, not just fitting into or following the Trust or PCT agenda

· Having a pan Kent group

· Being able to do audits and reviews of services

· Finding other people who are interested in getting involved

· Good to come together and devise what we want

· Create better links with rural meetings

· Have a working group but allocate time for support

· Be inclusive, don’t exclude for personal or political reasons

· Have support within a structure that we have created

· Should have forums in each area

· Build on & strengthen existing forums

· Be able to influence the Service Advisory Team

· Collectively set the agenda and condense salient points to feedback to the Trust

· Strength in numbers but need focus

· Have our own Personal Development Fund that people can apply for equipment and event expenses at the time they need it