Mental Health Reablement

Reading Borough Council have launched a pilot project to provide reablement support for
people recently discharged from Prospect Park Hospital or in the community in much the
same way reablement support is offered to people leaving a general hospital after a fall
(for example). This service aims to support people with mental health needs to gain or
regain their independence and reduce their long-term reliance on adult social care
services. It is firmly rooted in the recovery model of mental health, believing that it is
possible to live a good, fulfilling life in the presence or absence of symptoms of a mental
health diagnosis.

Reablement is focused on promoting people’s independence by supporting them to find
ways of coping with everyday life, so that they can get back to living the kind of life they
want. People work alongside occupational therapists and specially trained enablers to set
meaningful goals designed to build their confidence and sense of self, and so gain hope for
a more positive future. The enablers role is to support people to make those small steps
towards reaching their goals. It involves working in a person-centred way, providing just
the right level of support so that people are empowered to do things for themselves,
rather than becoming dependent on other people doing things for them.

In order to prepare the enablers, Compass put together a training package to give them an
understanding of the difficulties the people they support may be facing, along with the
skills they need to encourage people to stay motivated and to tackle some of the
challenges they face. This package includes sessions on understanding mental health
difficulties along with more specific sessions on psychosis and other mental health
challenges. Compass have co-produced these workshops with mental health professionals,
so the enablers get teaching from clinicians alongside very powerful learning from people
with lived experience of recovery. Other workshops focused on necessary practical skills;
such as techniques for dealing with behaviours that challenge or the skills needed to
promote people’s independence.

The sessions are initially being delivered to the service provider and will be opened up to
for Reading Borough Council professionals in April and May.