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News Update - February 2014
The Armed Forces Network Kent and Medway has been hard at work over the past two months delivering free Military Mindset Training across the county to organisations, most recently Trevor Gibbens Unit, Porchlight and Turning Point, delivered by our colleagues both of whom are recently discharged ex-military Physical Training Instructors (PTIs) Tony Lafferty and Conrad Baartman. Over the coming weeks we will be visiting Maidstone Mind, RBL Maidstone, KMPT in Medway and the Trevor Gibbons Unit to deliver the training to staff member and volunteers.
The training module provides insight into how military personnel are trained, how military training changes the individual’s belief system and thinking, changes the stress response that occurs in armed forces personnel, and how the transition to civilian life can be difficult for some veterans. We have had a fantastic response to the training, such as this quote from a recent attendee: “I found the presentation informative, thought provoking and quite powerful.” (Juliet P)
There are still slots available if your organisation wishes to hold a training event. Please contact Janine Judd via firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to book an event.
We have also been out and about promoting the Network visiting events including the Kent & Medway Civilian Military Partnership Board Workshop where we met a great number of you and added some new members to our Network. The Helpline (01303 856499) has been busy, and we are grateful to so many of you for spreading the word about access to free Mental Health services for veterans. If you require any more of our promotional items to share with your own networks please let us know.
Network Launch Event - Tuesday 2 April 2013, Canterbury College, Canterbury
The Armed Forces Network for Kent and Medway attracted 120 people from all walks of life with a passion for helping ex-military personnel to its launch on Tuesday 2 April 2013.
The event included military mind set presentations from Belinda Simpson, Lead for the Armed Forces Network and Managing Director, Counselling Team Ltd. Dr Wendy Frappell-Cooke, Joint Medical Command, DCMH Woolwich. Lieutenant Colonel Paul Meldon, the Commanding Officer of the 145 and 2 Brigade Personnel Recovery Unit, based in Aldershot. Wayne Kirkham, National Project Manager, National Veterans Mental Health Network. Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Neuropsychologist and Psychotherapist, Military and Veteran Mental Health Specialist. Jimmy Kerrigan, Mental Health Commissioner, NHS Kent and Medway. The presentations are available by clicking on the presenters name.
The event also offered the opportunity for individuals and organisations to come together in their local Clinical Commissioning Group areas. These groups shared information about the services they provide locally and across the county and identified gaps in service provision for ex-military personnel in their areas. Each group identified a central point of contact for the area which will assist them in continuing to work together as local champions for the AFN, sharing information and signposting ex-military personnel. The contributions from those workshops are feeding into the “next steps” planning that is currently underway.
Introducing the Armed Forces Network
The Armed Forces Network is a new network that provides information about free at the point of access mental health services for ex-military personnel across Kent and Medway. The network brings together volunteers and professionals to ensure ex-military personnel who are suffering from anxiety and depression, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can access and receive appropriate help.
The network is inclusive and ensures it provides opportunities for therapists to aspire to develop their expertise to provide services to the highest level and in keeping with NICE guidelines for treatment of anxiety and depression, and PTSD.
Forces Champions are individuals and organisations that signpost and promote local mental health services available to ex-military personnel.
Forces Therapists can join the network to benefit from close contact with other agencies involved in metal heath care for ex-services personnel. Therapists from a range of professions associated with mental health, and working with a broad range of anxiety and depression related issues from across all primary and secondary care psychological services (IAPT) providers and drug and alcohol services will develop their ability to triage referrals of ex-military personnel, offering support and signposting to other agencies as appropriate.
Forces Trauma Therapists are therapists accredited in a core mental health profession, trained in EMDR and/or CBT and have evidence of significant supervised experience in working with patients with complex multiple incident PTSD from across all primary and secondary care psychological services (IAPT) providers.