What we do
One of SRN’s aims is to see greater awareness and expectation of mental health recovery across Scotland. We use a strategic approach to communications to help us achieve this.
Each month we produce an email bulletin – the SRN eUpdate – with the latest news about SRN and recovery. Sign up here.
- Booklets and guides about recovery and peoples’ experiences
- Leaflets and posters
- Learning resources
- Research reports and policy papers
SRN is well known for our regional and national events, which we have been running since our launch at the Glasgow Lighthouse in December 2004 and first national conference in 2005. There are many event resources available on this site.
We use events to help bring people together to share experiences, learn and develop new ideas about recovery and related issues. Many of our events are open to the public, and we use this site and the eUpdate to advertise any forthcoming opportunities.
At SRN we believe that recovery focused learning and development is an essential element towards achieving our vision of ‘A Scotland where mental health recovery is a reality for all’.
Our Learning and Development programme provides targeted learning opportunities. These are designed to enhance recovery knowledge and skills that benefit people affected by mental health problems.
We seek to influence professional practice and involve people affected by mental health problems and carers in the design and delivery of such learning opportunities.
Our work in this area has included:
- Creating learning tools and resources, including the Realising Recovery materials and the PDA award in partnership with SQA on Mental Health Peer Support
- Input to universities and mental health education, including the development of modules for university programmes and CPD (Continuous Professional Development) for GPs
- Long term partnership with NHS Education for Scotland, including being a partner in Personal Outcomes Approach to Dementia
- Presentations to professional bodies, e.g. representing nursing, psychiatry and psychology
- Recovery Learning and Champions Networks
One outcome of this work is to mainstream recovery in targeted learning and development and CPD programmes.
Other projects currently at early stages include the development of an ambitious new online recovery resource designed to enhance self-management. This resource will be relevant in group contexts as well as for individuals accessing it at the time and place of their own choosing; the emphasis being on enhancing empowerment and autonomy.
Contact us to discuss learning and development opportunities.
Developing peer support
SRN believes wholeheartedly that peer support should be an integral part of recovery focused services. Peer working is a powerful way to support and develop recovery focused practice.
We have initiated and supported the development of peer working roles across the mental health sector. From our collaborations and learning we have developed a growing evidence base and resources to support the emerging peer working role.
Peer Workers are people who have personal experience of mental health problems who are trained and employed to work in a formalised role in support of others in recovery. They are willing and able to share their personal experiences on an equal level that validates, supports, empowers and brings hope to the individuals they partner with.
Recovery focused services involve people and use all available expertise – including lived experience – to ensure that the help and support available best meet the needs of people to lead their own recovery and develop a fulfilling and satisfying life. Peer working is a complement to both informal peer support and services provided by a range of different organisations and agencies.
Experts by experience
We use the term ‘Expert by Experience’ to highlight the importance of different types of expertise within mental health services. We believe that each person is an expert in their own experience.
Experiential expertise draws on what people have learned through their own recovery process. They can then use that experience in a way that is both supporting and empowering to others. It has a value and complements the knowledge based expertise of practitioners.
Guidelines and values framework
The Experts by Experience Implementation Guidelines are an invaluable resource for those planning the development of peer worker roles. They draw on Scottish and international experience of developing peer worker roles.
We have also developed a values framework for peer working to help increase understanding of the peer worker role and ensure that it maintains the peer support ethos.
Peer support qualification
As part of our commitment to ensure a well trained and credible peer workforce, we developed an accredited award with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. The PDA Mental Health Peer Support is delivered by SQA approved Learning Centres. We are keen to work with other organisations and learning centres to increase access to this qualification.
European peer support
SRN are one of six partners in a European project, Peer2peer, in which we have worked to integrate the PDA Mental Health Peer Support with another innovative approach, psychodrama and video therapy. The result of this international collaboration is the free Peer2Peer Vocational Training Course.
Peer support policy and research
Peer support has been a theme incorporated into recent national policy in Scotland. We were commissioned by the Scottish Government in 2012 to produce a short review of work to date in Scotland on peer support working as a basis for learning lessons and extending the use of the model more widely. We have also carried out extensive research into peer support, most recently looking at the factors that help and hinder organisations from developing peer worker roles.
How we can help you
SRN welcome the opportunity to work with areas and organisations to develop and look at how to sustain peer working across the mental health sector. This can include:
- Awareness raising sessions
- Support to develop and implement peer working roles
- Project planning
- Team preparation sessions
- Evaluation consultation
- Membership of the Peer Learning Network
SRN has a strong tradition of conducting and supporting research designed to help increase our understanding of recovery. We also develop research to evaluate our own activities as well as some developed out with SRN. We are committed to applying learning from research, wherever it’s been carried out, so that it can make a real difference in people’s lives.
Our research increasingly involves developing partnerships with Universities and other organisations to create new and impactful work. We particularly value research which seeks to better understand lived experiences of mental health and recovery as well as research which has practical application. We encourage the involvement of people affected by mental health issues in the design and delivery of research.
Find out more about research projects that have either been led or commissioned by SRN, or relate directly to our work.
We are always interested in developing new research projects. Contact us if you want to discuss research.
SRN believes that there are considerable connections between human rights and recovery.
Our work on rights and recovery contributes towards achieving our long term goal of supporting the empowerment of people with lived experience to lead their own recovery.
Some of our activities in this area include a submission to the Scottish Government consultation on proposed mental health legislation in 2014, and active involvement in the development and implementation of the Scottish National Action Plan for Human Rights.
More recently, we have been involved in Rights for Life, the national movement to achieve real, sustainable and transformational change to the way that people affected by mental health problems enjoy human rights.
Self-management has always been a key part of the recovery approach in Scotland. SRN’s 2005 Narrative Research project clearly identified the importance of a person taking responsibility for their own wellbeing, as a vital part of building/re-building their identity and gaining hope, confidence and thereby self-esteem and self-efficacy on their own recovery journey.
SRN Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP)
SRN have supported the development of Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP) in Scotland since 2008. WRAP is a self-management tool used in many countries around the world to help individuals take more control over their own wellbeing and recovery. It emphasises that people are the experts in their own experience and is based on the premise that there are no limits to recovery. Download SRN’s WRAP leaflet
What makes up a WRAP?
WRAP was developed in the United States by a group of people with mental health problems. It has been successfully shared across America and internationally. A growing number of SRN trained and Accredited Facilitators now deliver WRAP workshops across Scotland. Find out more about what makes up a WRAP
WRAP Facilitator training
SRN train WRAP Facilitators throughout Scotland. Facilitators are trained across a 5 day programme and receive ongoing support from SRN and opportunities to engage with fellow Facilitators.
WRAP Quality Accreditation (QA) System
SRN introduced a QA system to ensure that there is a consistent high standard in the delivery of the WRAP workshop. This system ensures that people attending WRAP workshops have a positive experience and a confidence in the WRAP group experience. Find out more about the SRN WRAP Quality Accreditation System
A partnership approach to self-management
Self-management is an important piece of the recovery ‘jigsaw’. As the ‘jigsaw’ metaphor implies, SRN’s work involves partnership with key organisations and individuals particularly to encourage more local ‘buy in’ for self-management approaches.
Our work in training and supporting Facilitators concentrates on particular health board and local authority areas where WRAP is not yet easily available, but where there is a demonstrated interest from key decision-makers.
What is the SRI 2?
SRI 2 is a self-assessment service development tool that can be used by anyone interested in developing recovery focused services. We developed SRI 2 in 2011 to provide services with a practical tool to review, develop and improve how they support recovery.
Completing an SRI 2 can help services highlight existing strengths to build upon and identify actions to improve their recovery focus.
How can SRI 2 help services?
Completing an SRI 2 allows services to demonstrate their commitment to recovery focused practice. It provides services with a structured framework and evidence based process to review how the service is supporting recovery outcomes.
The SRI 2 process encourages reflection and discussions that can lead to new insights about how services can improve the way they promote recovery focused values and support recovery based outcomes in their everyday practices.
SRN have worked with services across Scotland to find out more about their experience, and the impact of completing an SRI 2. From this we know that completing an SRI 2 is a supportive and motivating process based on reflection and self-improvement. It allows existing strengths and good practice to be recognised and acknowledged while highlighting areas where services can be improved to support better recovery outcomes.
SRI 2 reflects the values and best practice described in Rights, Relationships and Recovery and the 10 Essential Shared Capabilities for Mental Health Practice. It also complements a range of other policy programmes and initiatives. SRI 2 can help services produce evidence that they are responding positively to these policy drivers.
Who should use SRI 2?
Anyone interested in recovery orientated practice and service improvement would benefit from the experience of completing an SRI 2. It has been used widely in the NHS but is also increasingly being seen as a valuable resource by other services including those in the voluntary sector and social work.
Over 360 services have already completed an SRI 2. Services that have benefited from completing an SRI 2 have come from across the mental health sector in both community and inpatient settings. It has also been used by social care services, addictions services and services working with people with dementia.
How does SRI 2 work?
SRI 2 provides a structured framework for reviewing and evaluating how services are performing in relation to 10 recovery indicators. The service reflects on its policies and practices against these recovery indicators using evidence drawn from documentation and by seeking the views of those involved in the service – people providing the service, people who use the service and their carers.
The SRI 2 framework includes a series of reflective statements that allow services to rate current practice against the 10 recovery indicators. This in turn should stimulate reflective conversations about current strengths and potential areas for improvement. The main outcome from the SRI 2 process is an action plan that identifies existing strengths that can be built upon and improvements that can be made to make the service more recovery focused.
Everyone has a story. Writing it down can help you in many different ways.
Write to Recovery is an SRN website designed to help people affected by mental health problems on their journey of recovery. It invites you to write your stories and experiences – and gives tools to inspire you.
You can share your work with others through the site. There is good evidence that this type of story sharing process can be helpful for wellbeing and recovery.
We are currently developing guidance on how to facilitate group sessions of Write to Recovery. The guidance will enable the tool to be used in diverse ways, for example social groups where people can be helped to share experiences, learn from each other and gain confidence.
SRN has a long and rich tradition of helping people write and share their personal narratives, helping to increase and disseminate knowledge and understanding about mental health recovery.