Re: Minds

Southampton

Your story

We are a small parent led support group for families who have children with autism or mental health issues.

Group introduction

The group was set up in September 2015, by a parent of a son with complex mental health needs as there was no support available locally. We meet fortnightly and have speakers each month on subjects to help parents with difficult issues on autism or mental health. We recently began meeting fortnightly and offer peer support, advice on school and home issues and a chance to chat to people who understand how hard life can be.

How would this funding have an impact on your community?

So far we have managed to run the group without any funding at all. Now we want to expand and offer more practical guidance for schools and introduce workshops and evening sessions for parents, working with CAMHS (Children Adolescent Mental Health Hospital). We want to set up a website for families, schools and professionals where we can hold Ted Talks, and Q&As with clinicians and have practical advice. CAMHS have agreed to work with us indefinitely and give us speakers, so we want to really grow and make the most of this. There is nowhere else in the local area that offers anything like this and whilst we currently have over 300 people in our Facebook group, there are hundreds more we could help - not including schools. This money could make a huge difference to the lives of our families.

"I can quite easily say that Re:minds saved me. I was desperate and flailing in a system designed to help but that actually was not offering me any solutions or help. In my darkest hour I considered ending it for both of us. I came to that first meeting at Re:minds full of trepidation, I didn’t know anyone else there and talking about my daughters fragile mental health seemed a daunting thing, but I knew that we were in danger of losing her if I didn’t find a way to help her myself. The group were so welcoming and Gill opened up by putting everyone at their ease and talked about her own son and his mental health. All of a sudden I was in a room full of friends. I can say with certainty that some of these people are now friends for life, I am understood, supported, befriended and most of all I’m not on my own struggling with this scary condition.

You never know when you are going to walk in these shoes and I didn’t know how many people were walking in them with me.
The group has gone on to make alliances with CAMHS and is well respected by parents and professionals alike. I’ve had training, borrowed books, drank coffee, cried with others, and I hope helped out others along the way.

Quite simply without this group I have no doubt things could have ended up differently. Thank you Gill, you are amazing and I am privileged to have met you.

Angela"

For more information visit:

www.facebook.com/groups/reminds

www.facebook.com/groups/reminds

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