Richmond Fellowship recognised for promoting equality and diversity

Richmond Fellowship has once again been placed in the top 100 organisations for promoting diversity, equality and inclusion by the National Centre for Diversity (NCFD).

Richmond Fellowship was ranked number 92 in the country, in recognition of its work to promote diversity, inclusiveness and equality across the organisation.

Tracey Bell, Director of Performance, Quality and Innovation at Richmond Fellowship said:

“It’s great news that in 2019 we are again ranked in the top 100. We’re incredibly proud of our diverse workforce and the range of experience our staff bring to supporting people using our services. This achievement is down to the hard work and commitment of everyone in Richmond Fellowship to promoting diversity and inclusion and to working together with the people we support to shape our services.

I am particularly proud that Richmond Fellowship’s mean gender pay gap, at 5.93%, is significantly lower that the not for profit sector average of 19.4%. Also that, while we recognise there is always more for us to do, 82% of staff in Richmond Fellowship feel that their colleagues work in accordance with the principles of Fairness, Respect, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.”

Richmond Fellowship also holds Investors in Diversity status in recognition of its work to provide opportunities for people living with mental ill health and to ensure diversity right across the organisation.

New Bristol Get Well, Get On Employment service

Richmond Fellowship is working in partnership with Bristol City Council to develop a new service called Get Well Get On.

The Employment Retention service will provide support to people who are in work, at risk of falling out of work and who are on sick leave but are still employed with mental ill health and/or muscular-skeletal conditions.

The service will promote self management and provide access to employment advice and support for both individuals and small or medium sized employers.

The new service will be working with existing delivery partners including Bristol City Council, Ways 2 Work Network, Work Zone, Bristol WORKS, Bristol Apprentices and Future Bright.

Richmond Fellowship will also be working with Public Health England, the local Chamber of Commerce, Trade Unions and Project Thrive, the city wide mental health initiative.

The service is about to take its first referrals.

For further details about what the service offers, please email Bristol.GetWellGetOn@richmondfellowship.org.uk.

Statement – Richmond Psychosocial Foundation International

A spokesperson from Richmond Fellowship said:

“There is no connection between Richmond Fellowship and Richmond Psychosocial Foundation International (RPFI).

The founder of Richmond Fellowship is associated with Richmond Psychosocial Foundation but has had no involvement in the operations or direction of Richmond Fellowship since 1991.”

Aimee’s story – blog for Time to Talk Day

On Time to Talk Day, Aimee Wilson, who uses Richmond Fellowship’s services in Northumberland shares her own experiences of talking about mental health and reiterates why it’s so important.

“Talking about mental health is becoming less and less taboo and it’s partly thanks to days like Time to Talk Day! Ten years ago, when I began experiencing auditory hallucinations, mental health was a subject greeted with hushed voices and spiteful gossip. From my personal experience, being diagnosed with a mental health disorder in 2009 came with a million negative connotations and assumptions that left the person feeling isolated and hopeless; believing that because no one else was talking about mental health, they were alone in their experiences.

I spent almost two weeks hearing voices before I finally told a professional and when I did; it was a result of an act of desperation and panic following my first suicide attempt and admission to a psychiatric hospital under the Mental Health Act.

No one could comprehend why I felt suicidal, so it was with great struggle that I fought my doubts and fears and confided in a nurse one night in the ward communal sitting room. This was a relief, but I was still so afraid of judgement and being misunderstood that even after speaking out I struggled to continue the momentum into the following day when the psychiatrist came rushing into my hospital room talking about psychosis and medications. However, once the medication started to take effect, I was able to see how talking about my mental health enabled the staff to be better placed to help and support me.

This thought was encouraging; it filled me with a sense of hope that if I opened up more, then maybe I could get better. It was this reason that motivated me to continue to be honest about my mental health; I told professionals when I’d self-harmed, I spoke about my trauma and my hallucinations, and I talked about any overwhelming emotions that influenced my behaviours.

In fact it was this openness and honesty that inspired me to begin my blog: ‘I’m NOT Disordered’ four years after I was first hospitalised. Over the past six years, my blog has been praised and commended for its honesty, having instilled hope and confidence in its readers. The feedback from my readers has been that by sharing my own experiences of hallucinations and explaining how overwhelming my emotions were, others have gained a better understanding of how they can support those they love and care for, who are having similar experiences.

Similarly, speaking out about my trauma and the impact it has had on me via my blog, has inspired my readers who’ve also experienced trauma to seek help and support. For example, one of the greatest messages I’ve received was from a reader who had experienced a trauma over 30 years ago. After reading my blog post about finding the strength to report my trauma, this person made the decision to report their own trauma. The realisation that my words and experiences had had such a significant impact on someone’s life was overwhelming, but it only spurred me on to write more. I continued to write about my self-harm and suicide attempts aiming to reassure others that they weren’t going through similar experiences alone.

Ultimately, it is these things that make mental health such a worthwhile and potentially life-saving topic of conversation. One that should be on everyone’s lips.”

Isle Of Wight Safe Haven opening hours – 11-17 February

Richmond Fellowship’s Safe Haven on the Isle of Wight will be available on the following days from Monday 11 February to Sunday 17 February.

Monday 11 February: Fully Open
Tuesday 12 February: Fully Open
Wednesday 13 February: Fully Open
Thursday 14 February: Fully Open
Friday 15 February: Fully Open
Saturday 16 February: Fully Open
Sunday 17 February: Fully Open

Please contact the Safe Haven for more details on 03300 083888.

Address: Quay House, Newport, PO30 2QR.