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Courses in Haverhill will support people living with mental health issues

A charity is launching two five-week long courses in Haverhill to support people with a range of mental health issues.

The Five Ways to Well-Being course will be launched in March and will support those with a wide-range of mental health issues including depression, anxiety, stress, loneliness to more long-term conditions such as schizophrenia.

Suffolk User Forum (SUF), a user-led mental health charity which supports people across Suffolk will run the courses.

Members of the Suffolk User Forum with Vera Pender (3rd left) at a previous Five Ways to Well-Being course. Contributed picture
Members of the Suffolk User Forum with Vera Pender (3rd left) at a previous Five Ways to Well-Being course. Contributed picture

The courses will provide people with advice on how to improve their emotional well-being, such as safety planning, how to access community support groups, dealing with poverty, mindfulness and the importance healthy eating and exercise.

The courses are being run following a successful trial last year in Ipswich.

Vera Pender, 45, who attended the course said: “I am so glad I decided to attend the course.

“Each session was full of useful information and helped me to look at my issues from a different perspective and I am now enjoying a much better quality of life as a direct result of attending the course.”

Funding for the course has been provided via the Realising Ambitions Programme established by the Suffolk & North East Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) to support its plan of integrating local health, care and voluntary services.

The programme has granted a total of 1.2m, which is being distributed via the Suffolk Coummunity Foundation to support groups across the county.

Jayne Stevens, SUF Manager, said: “We are delighted to have received the funding to run the Five Ways to Well-being courses in Haverhill.

“We know from running the course in other areas that they work extremely well and have extremely positive outcomes.

“The course encourages people to learn something new, which can boost confidence, connecting with a wider network of people which can enrich a person’s life and embracing the here and now to appreciate what matters to us.

“All of the issues discussed on the course are known to help improve mental health and emotional well-being.”

The Five Ways to Well-being course starts in Haverhill on Thursday, March 19 at the town library. People can self-refer to the courses or can be referred by their GP or link worker.