From Harm to Hope, Friday 1st March 2019

Harmless’ third national self harm conference will be held on Friday 1st March 2019, Self Harm Awareness Day. This year’s theme is: ‘our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes’.

JOIN US
£150 per delegate place*
Or
2 delegate places for £200*

Conference details:

The theme of our conference is Our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes. 

Harmless recognises that self harm affects a broad range of individuals, facing many diverse experiences; reducing the number of individuals that self harm requires contributions from across society and includes education, prevention, intervention and postvention work.

This exciting new event will bring together private, public, voluntary and community sector organisations, individuals with lived experience of self harm and practitioners & academics in the field of self harm in an ethos of joint working and shared experience.

Our conference is themed around five strategic areas:

  • Collaborative partnership,
  • Service user representation,
  • Effective practice,
  • Driving change &
  • Overcoming stigma and discrimination.

Delegates can expect to take away from the conference a range of knowledge, inspiration and practical applications for the implementation in real life personal and professional situations. Learning from some of the leaders in the field, delegates will have access to interactive sessions that can drive change in the field of self harm.

Speakers:

Dr Nav Kapur

Dr ​Alys Cole-King

Prof. Siobhan O’Neill

Dr Sarah Cassidy

http://www.harmless.org.uk/store/self-harm-conference-2019

In the News: School replaces detention with meditation and has astounding results

The Dalai Lama once said: “If every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.”
 
According to recent news articles by Newsweek and The Times, the students in detention at Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore aren’t staring at chalkboards and walls during detention—they’re meditating and practicing yoga as part of an after-school program.
 
Here’s how the project, created by the Holistic Life Foundation, works: Holistic Me hosts 120 male and female students in a program that runs from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. and involves yoga, breathing exercises and meditative activities. Disruptive students are brought to a special place called the Mindful Moment Room for breathing practices and discussion with a counselor and are instructed on how to manage their emotions.
 
The project, which focuses on pre-kindergarten through fifth-grade students, approaches punishment in an entirely different way and reports an incredible result: zero suspensions in the last year.
Comparatively, the 2013–2014 school year had four suspensions.
“With the first year being so successful, I started seeing a difference in their behaviors. Instead of the students fighting or lashing out, they started to use words to solve their problems,” the school principal, Carlillian Thompson, told the Holistic Life Foundation in a news interview. “We see the success rate of those students who began in the program now. They are middle school students who are very successful; they come back and participate in the program.”
 
Their goal was to provide kids from a low-income and high-crime-rate neighborhood with the tools to cope with stress and anger. Over the past 15 years, students of the program have graduated and transitioned into mentor roles—former students now make up 50 percent of its workforce.
 
Meditation is an ancient practice that was always used as an essential tool for bringing a person’s mind back into balance.
 

Youth suicide prevention needs more than social media regulation

I cannot remember another time in the recent past when the prevention of youth suicide and self-harm has led the news cycle to such a degree – as it has done in the past few weeks in the UK. This is fantastic and long overdue. As someone who has been working in the suicide prevention field for 20+ years and who has lost important people in my life to suicide, I never thought I’d see the day when suicide prevention would be talked about so openly (and appropriately, for the most part) in the mainstream media.

I have also been incredibly moved by the personal stories of loss that so many heartbroken loved ones have shared. Indeed, if it wasn’t for these vital contributions and the advocacy of those bereaved by suicide, I doubt that suicide prevention would be the leading political priority that it has become.  The governments across the UK (and the many advocates who campaign tirelessly) should be commended for prioritising suicide prevention which culminated in a global first – the appointment of a first-ever Minister for Suicide Prevention announced in England last year on World Suicide Prevention Day.

However, as I illustrated in a recent tweet, my concern is that we may miss this golden opportunity to really move our suicide prevention efforts forward by blaming social media companies. By focusing too much attention on social media, we run the risk of ignoring the social, clinical, cultural and psychological causes of youth suicide. It is too easy, and inaccurate, to level the blame for youth self-harm/suicide at the apps of social media organisations.  My fear is that ‘the social media and suicide’ headlines are hiding the fact that most people who die by suicide are trapped by disadvantage and/or emotional pain, have often experienced early life trauma and/or did not receive the timely and tailored mental health treatment that they so badly needed. That should be our focus – how do we keep our young people safe – offline as well as online – especially the most vulnerable?

Tackling social inequality and adequately funding mental health services will save countless more lives than regulating social media companies.  It shouldn’t be an either-or, though; it should be both.  In all of the recent media coverage, rarely has the complexity of suicide risk been conveyed (see Panel 1 below from Hawton, Saunders & O’Connor, 2012). Tackling social media use is only one part of the puzzle. The fact that mental health services have been cut, that the most disadvantaged are not protected and that there are unacceptably long waiting lists is at the heart of suicide prevention.

Of course, we should ensure that graphic images of self-harm and suicide are removed from social media platforms like Instagram. And I welcome the UK government’s efforts to ensure that Instagram (and other platforms) removes all such content – and NSPCC’s call to help keep young people safe online. These efforts are important because we know there is an association between suicide/self-harm and suicidal behaviour. Indeed, a few years ago, we asked adolescents about the factors that influenced their self-harm and about 1 in 5 mentioned social media/internet as a factor. This number has likely grown since.  So I am not questioning the relationship itself. But the relationship between social media use and suicide/self-harm is weak and complicated; it is not the key driver for suicide; and for many young people, social media acts as a safety net in times of crisis when mental health services are not available. We need to be careful not to demonise all aspects of social media and inadvertently remove this vital source of support for our young people. Another challenge is that the evidence for what works – in terms of treatments for suicidal young people – is severely lacking.  As a matter of urgency, we need to fund more suicide prevention research.

I sincerely hope that politicians who were so vocal in their calls to regulate social media platforms will be similarly vocal in calling for more research into treatments to prevent suicide.  We need a step-change in funding for youth suicide prevention.  Let’s harness this moment to highlight the complexity of suicide risk; to promote hope and recovery and crucially to maintain the pressure on government to ensure that their strong words around suicide prevention are translated into funding for suicide prevention research and much needed services.

If you are affected by suicide or you are worried about someone, Samaritans is available 24/7 on 116 123 or via email jo@samaritans.org.  More crisis information is available here.

Professor Rory O’Connor
Director, Suicidal Behaviour Research Laboratory
12/02/2019

http://www.suicideresearch.info/news-1/youthsuicidepreventionneedsmorethansocialmediaregulation?fbclid=IwAR3ZBqE2jw2OPMkEBULVp5V6wOErBuapcIY_x76PyNDok3gLqTCN5QcLJxI

Science shows that spending time outdoors can actually make you healthier.

Science shows that spending time outdoors can actually make you healthier.
Escaping to the woods, mountains or even your local park positively supports both your body and your mind. And psychologists and health researchers are finding more and more science-backed reasons we should spend time outside.
 
Research conducted at the University of Essex showed that the colour green, such as that found on trees, grass and other plants in nature, makes exercise feel easier. The small study tested cyclists pedaling in front of green, grey and red images. Those exercising in front of the green showed less mood disturbances and reported that they felt lower exertion during their cycling.
 
Most of us are aware that a quick walk around the block does wonders for the mind. But what a new study reveals is that if you want to come back with your brain power enhanced, the scenery en route really matters.
 
Not only this…..as taking a stroll can also increase creativity. Research published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology found that walking increases creative production. And while walking anywhere — whether through the woods or in town — is beneficial in that it prompts creativity.
 
Spending time in nature has been shown to lower stress levels so what are we waiting for? Who’s joining us on a scenic walk?

FREE SPONSORED PLACES NOW AVAILABLE

The theme of our conference is Our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes.

Thank you to our community champions Nottingham City Transport, E.G Law and MSS (Steel Services) LTD, who have sponsored places for this conference. They are sponsoring the conference as well as supporting our life saving self harm and suicide prevention work.

NCT are supporting Nottingham City residents with sponsored places.

Harmless recognises that self harm affects a broad range of individuals, facing many diverse experiences; reducing the number of individuals that self harm requires contributions from across society and includes education, prevention, intervention and postvention work.

This exciting event will bring together private, public, voluntary and community sector organisations, individuals with lived experience of self harm and practitioners & academics in the field of self harm in an ethos of joint working and shared experience.

Our conference is themed around five strategic areas: Collaborative partnership, Service user representation, Effective practice, Driving change & Overcoming stigma and discrimination.

Delegates can expect to take away from the conference a range of knowledge, inspiration and practical applications for the implementation in real life personal and professional situations. Learning from some of the leaders in the field, delegates will have access to interactive sessions that can drive change in the field of self harm.

Venue:
The conference will be held at the specialist conference venue in the heart of Nottingham, The Nottingham Conference Centre. For directions please click here

How do I apply?
To make an application for one of our sponsored places, please download and complete the form at the following link and return to admin@harmless.org.uk:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/99x3lqv36yd9txv/Sponsored%20Place%20Application%20Form%202019.docx?dl=0

The deadline for applications is 12pm on Wednesday 20th February 2019.

Speakers:
Prof. Nav Kapur
Dr ​Alys Cole-King
Prof. Siobhan O’Neill
Dr Sarah Cassidy

 Workshops:

 

Any questions?
If you have any questions about the conference or the sponsored place process, please do not hesitate to contact us by emailing admin@harmless.org.uk.

Harm to Hope conference – less than one month away!

Tickets are selling fast, purchase yours soon to avoid disappointment.
 
This years theme is: Our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes.
Friday 1st March 2019
£150 per delegate place*
or
2 delegate places for £200*
The theme of our conference is Our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes.
Harmless recognises that self harm affects a broad range of individuals, facing many diverse experiences; reducing the number of individuals that self harm requires contributions from across society and includes education, prevention, intervention and postvention work.
This exciting new event will bring together private, public, voluntary and community sector organisations, individuals with lived experience of self harm and practitioners & academics in the field of self harm in an ethos of joint working and shared experience.
Our conference is themed around five strategic areas:
· Collaborative partnership,
· Service user representation,
· Effective practice,
· Driving change &
· Overcoming stigma and discrimination.
Delegates can expect to take away from the conference a range of knowledge, inspiration and practical applications for the implementation in real life personal and professional situations. Learning from some of the leaders in the field, delegates will have access to interactive sessions that can drive change in the field of self harm.
Speakers:
Prof. Nav Kapur
Dr Alys Cole-King
Prof. Siobhan O’Neill
Dr Sarah Cassidy
 
Venue:
The conference will be held at the specialist conference venue in the heart of Nottingham, The Nottingham Conference Centre. For directions please click here
Where can I find more information?
If you would like more information about the forthcoming conference, then please email admin@harmless.org.uk
Or speak directly to a member of our team on: 0115 880 0280

In the News: Why it pays to take mental health seriously in the workplace

Change can only happen when people speak out, and this is a significant issue that affects so many in the workplace and wider society. Numbers and statistics can provide a framework, but for every person battling with mental health, numbers don’t matter, what matters are the actions of others.
 
Within every business, there will be those who suffer in silence to the point that control is lost and the very act of getting out of bed becomes utterly overwhelming. Employees are still reluctant to share mental health information with their managers or bosses, seemingly with good reason.
 
The stigma associated with mental health, being treated unfairly, becoming the subject of office gossip or compromising their employment terms are all legitimate fears.
 
To tackle this global workforce issue, John Williams, head of marketing at Instant Offices, encourages employers to support their teams to speak about and prioritise mental health, promote a healthy work-life balance, reduce the stigma attached to mental health issues and introduce initiatives to support and encourage staff who choose to speak up.
 
Here’s what employers can do:
 
Minimise the stigma: Instead of making employees feel like liabilities or burdens, employers need to take active steps to encourage conversations around these issues.
 
Taking a mental health day or asking for support around mental health issues should not impact an employee’s reputation and how they are treated at work.
 
Pay attention: The lack of training and sensitivity only works to perpetuate the culture of silence around mental health and wellbeing at work. Companies should be working to combat this by monitoring employee stress, encouraging communication and taking active steps to increase knowledge around the issue.
 
Be more flexible: There are several ways to boost employee engagement and happiness in the modern workplace. A growth in flexible working shows more businesses are responding.
 
Introducing a flexible working option is one of the ways businesses can prioritise their employees’ personal needs while benefitting from their productivity boost, too. Data from LSBF shows nearly half of employees advocate for flexible working hours as a way to reduce workplace stress and anxiety, increase productivity, and to improve morale and engagement.
 
Introduce mental health initiatives: It is crucial to increase employee awareness of mental health at work, support employees at risk and take steps to support those suffering from mental health problems. Education is key, and strategies need to be tailor-made to suit each business and its needs.
 
Aside from increasing workplace happiness with perks, time off and better communication, businesses need to look at long-term policies which advocate for better treatment for at-risk employees from every tier of the organisation.
 
Manage via a coaching approach: Historically, tyrannical managers focused on ‘the numbers’ or ‘getting the job done’ have been the norm, but fortunately, the modern workplace has changed.
 
Today, the manager who adopts a more holistic approach by focusing on the growth and development of their team, personally and professionally, will see greater results and engagement. Investing in a coaching approach has shown clear improvements across all areas and improved trust between managers and employees. Getting this balance right enables employees to speak about their levels of stress, their worries about their role and more.
 
In the modern workplace, smart employers are placing workplace wellness at the core of their business by recognising the importance of their staff. They are going beyond protocol, processes and profits to ensure individuals feel valued and supported.
 
Wellness and workplace health initiatives are varied but include everything from serious interventions and counselling services to mindfulness training, flexible working and even options like yoga, time off and massages at work.
 
Placing health and wellbeing at the heart of business can help employers attract and retain talent, improve productivity and happiness, and positively impact the bottom line.
 
Educating the workforce on the availability of such programmes where they can find support in a confidential and respectful manner, will help to address personal challenges before they become overwhelming.
 
Link to full blog: https://dealersupport.co.uk/why-it-pays-to-take-mental-health-seriously-in-the-workplace/
 
If you or your workplace would like some information regarding mental health training, contact our wonderful training team training@harmless.org.uk or phone 01158800280.

From Harm to Hope, Friday 1st March 2019

Harmless’ third national self harm conference will be held on Friday 1st March 2019, Self Harm Awareness Day. This year’s theme is: ‘our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes’.

JOIN US
£150 per delegate place*
Or
2 delegate places for £200*

Conference details:

The theme of our conference is Our young people: intervention & early intervention for improved outcomes. 

Harmless recognises that self harm affects a broad range of individuals, facing many diverse experiences; reducing the number of individuals that self harm requires contributions from across society and includes education, prevention, intervention and postvention work.

This exciting new event will bring together private, public, voluntary and community sector organisations, individuals with lived experience of self harm and practitioners & academics in the field of self harm in an ethos of joint working and shared experience.

Our conference is themed around five strategic areas:

  • Collaborative partnership,
  • Service user representation,
  • Effective practice,
  • Driving change &
  • Overcoming stigma and discrimination.

Delegates can expect to take away from the conference a range of knowledge, inspiration and practical applications for the implementation in real life personal and professional situations. Learning from some of the leaders in the field, delegates will have access to interactive sessions that can drive change in the field of self harm.

Speakers:

Dr Nav Kapur

Dr ​Alys Cole-King

Prof. Siobhan O’Neill

Dr Sarah Cassidy

http://www.harmless.org.uk/store/self-harm-conference-2019

Children’s Mental Health Week: In the News: could meditation pods in schools make a difference?

A primary school in Essex has installed an ‘anti-stress’ pod to help improve mental wellbeing. Longwood Primary Academy in Harlow is among the first schools to offer meditation breaks of 15 to 30 minutes for the students.
 
Last year, NHS figures showed that almost 400,000 children and young people in England are treated for mental health problems, and that the numbers looking for help for anxiety, depression and eating disorders were rising sharply.
 
It seems schools are taking note. Some have already introduced mindfulness classes, and if meditation pods like the one at Longwood catch on, there could soon be places children can go during the school day for a bit of quiet time. The pod, installed for a trial period, has a selection of soothing tracks to listen to, and the wooden slats to ensure kids don’t feel claustrophobic.
 

Would you like to work for Harmless as part of our clinical team?

Harmless are pleased to offer an exciting opportunity for a Specialist Therapist to join our passionate team and help us save lives. We are looking for a dynamic individual, who is willing to develop their skills; work outside the box and challenge themselves in order to do whatever is required to help people attain recovery.

We are currently recruiting for a Specialist Therapist to join the Harmless team (both part time and full time available). The deadline for applications is Monday 11th March 2019 at 12pm, with interviews to take place in the week commencing 18th March 2019.

Please click here to download the application pack for this role.

This role is particularly well suited to those early in their career looking for a long term opportunity to develop as a specialist therapist. Work as part of this role will take place across Nottinghamshire & Leicestershire therefore ability to drive and access to a car is essential.

Please submit all applications and any questions regarding these positions to admin@harmless.org.uk by the above deadline. Any applications received after the deadline may not be considered.

 

JOB TITLE: Specialist Therapist

HOURS: Up to 37.5 hours per week
(Both part time and full time available)

SALARY: Up to £23,250 per annum
(Depending on experience)

This position has been funded by the Big Lottery Fund.

If you have any questions regarding either of the roles or the application process, please contact us by calling 0115 880 0280 or email admin@harmless.org.uk.