Dundee welcomes Minister for Mental Health

29th June 2017

Maureen Watt, Scotland’s Minister for Mental Health, joined people from across Dundee at a Recovery Café event, to discuss their views on what supports mental health recovery.

The Recovery Café was held as part of the Making Recovery Real in Dundee initiative which started in July 2015. This initiative involves eleven organisations* who believe that people living with mental health challenges and those providing services and support should be brought together to develop local approaches and resources. It has provided a platform for discussion about recovery and what this means for local people.

The event provided an opportunity for the Minister for Mental Health and her team to speak with partners and participants from the initiative and experience first-hand some of the collaborative approaches being used to engage people in discussion and planning around future mental health priorities for the area.

In true café style participants enjoyed afternoon tea with the Minister as they discussed what has been important in their recovery and the positive impact of peer support. Making the decision to forego any official speeches, the Minister instead took the time to make sure she engaged with everyone at the event so that all views were heard.

Minister for Mental Health, Maureen Watt MSP said:

I was really pleased to visit the Recovery Café and speak to people there about what they think supports mental health recovery. We believe in a person-centred approach and our new ten-year Mental Health Strategy was fundamentally shaped by feedback from organisations and service users, whose views demonstrated passion and the need for change.

As a result we are taking forward an initial 40 actions to shape change and ensure mental health has true parity of esteem with physical health, backed by £150 million investment, to support our vision of a Scotland where people can get the right help at the right time, expect recovery, and fully enjoy their rights, free from discrimination and stigma


The Minister also had the chance to hear about other Making Recovery Real in Dundee programme activities. This has included the creation of a number of story sharing groups, the development of peer support roles in services and organisations and work with the Mental Health Officer service to facilitate a co-productive approach to service improvement.

Making Recovery Real in Dundee commented:

We were delighted to welcome Maureen Watt the Minister for Mental Health to our event and to tell her all about the achievements of the Making Recovery Real in Dundee initiative to date.

Making Recovery Real in Dundee places the voice and experiences of people living with mental health challenges at the centre of what is done to support people’s recovery. This means that services and supports should be designed in a way that not only learns from people’s experiences but also involves them in the way they are delivered.



*Scottish Recovery Network (SRN); Dundee City Council; NHS Tayside; Dundee Voluntary Action; Dundee Association for Mental Health; Hearing Voices Network; Penumbra; The Richmond Fellowship Scotland; Scottish Association for Mental Health; Art Angel and Dundee Independent Advocacy Support.