Many people value the support they receive from their local mental health services.
Peer Support Networks and User Forums
Peer support networks or service user forums provide people with an opportunity to meet and socialise with others who have experienced issues with their mental health.
TAKE OFF ( formerly Canterbury and District Mental Health Forum)
An independent registered charity which aims to give a voice to users of mental health services; to make community care work; helping to shape mental health services into as comprehensive and socially useful a service as possible; and to educate the public in, and promote awareness of, mental health problems.TAKE OFF 34 Military Road, Canterbury, Kent CT1 1LT
Tel: 01227 788211
Tunbridge Wells Mental Health Resource - The Hub
For more information on this service, click here
East Kent User Forums
Rethink User Forums are currently held in many areas within East Kent: Ashford, Deal, Dover, Sandwich, Shepway and Thanet.
There are many ways that mental health service users (or former users) can become involved in the forums. You can attend a forum meeting and contribute to the forum newsletters. You may wish to become a user forum representative and (with support) attend local statutory and non-statutory meetings. You may like to become involved in local or national campaigns.
The user forum workers and volunteers, are always happy to hear your views, and if you would like to become more actively involved they would be very happy to hear from you.
For more information,click here
Shepway Open Forum (SWOF)
Shepway Open Forum provides people with mental health needs an opportunity to meet others, make friends and have a say in the way mental health services are delivered.The Channel Business Centre, Ingles Manor, Castle Hill Avenue, Folkestone, Kent CT20 2RD
Tel: 01303 850 856/ 07902 804 733
Swale User Forum
Swale User Forum provides a range of forums and groups across Sheerness and Sittingbourne. The forums provide an opportunity to meet others and help people have a voice and a say in mental health services in Swale and East Kent.Swale User Forum Rethink Mental Illness, 4-5 High Street, Gravesend, Kent, DA11 0BQ Tel: 01474 330 282
Reachout (West Kent)
Reachout provides friendly and confidential peer support groups for people with mental health difficulties based in the community. Their aim is to reduce isolation and encourage people to be pro-active in managing their own mental health problems. Those who attend the groups are encouraged to share their personal experiences and coping strategies, and in addition, they have the opportunitiy to feedback their experiences and views of treatment and care.
They meet for people to make friends and share personal experiences in an environment where members find they can understand one another. Groups offer friendly, confidential self-help support groups in a caring and non-judgemental environment, facilitated by a paid member of staff.
They give the opportunity to provide anonymous feedback, which they hope will improve mental health services within the local area. Occasionally they have guest speakers and social activities.
Reachout groups currently meet every two weeks in Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge, Sevenoaks, Hawkhurst and Cranbrook and Edenbridge
For more information, click here
Platform (Maidstone area)
Platform is a project where people who are involved with mental health services in the Borough of Maidstone have the opportunity to meet one another and to discuss issues that affect their daily lives. So whether you would like to go along and enjoy a free cup of coffee, tea or sugar free squash and meet other people, or whether you want to represent others in the planning and development of mental health services both locally and throughout West Kent, you are most welcome to attend any of its forum meetings.
Maidstone - PlatformInvolve Volunteer Centre Maidstone Town Hall, Middle Row, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 1TF email: [email protected]
Medway Engagement Group & Network (MEGAN) CIC
Formerly known as The Mental Health Service User Engagement Project, MEGAN CIC provides opportunities for mental health service users past and present to share their views and experiences of mental health issues and services and participate in local service planning and development.
They facilitate various groups which include: New comers group, forums, activity afternoon/music group, drop in sessions, peer support group and many many more. The groups support people with building confidence, building a network of friends, to have a voice and to help reduce stigma and discrimination around mental health in general. Peer Support Groups are available for people with Personality Disorder in the Swale and Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley areas & a Medway Personailty Disorder group has been running for nearly two years.
If you would like to know more please contact Tracey or Catherine at the following:
Tel: 01634 402 077