Below is a list of all news items that have featured on the homepage.

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Newsletter - June 2014

The latest volume of the Meriden newsletter has been published and you can find a copy of this on our website.(June 2014)

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Mental Health Innovation Network

There is a growing commitment to develop, evaluate, and scale up promotion, prevention and treatment innovations for mental disorders around the world. The Mental Health Innovation Network (MHIN) was initiated in June 2013 to nurture this commitment and accelerate progress toward implementation of these innovations.

The Network’s activities are supported by a team of researchers and policy makers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine’s Centre for Global Mental Health and the World Health Organization’s Department for Mental Health and Substance Abuse. MHIN receives guidance from an independent advisory group, representing global mental health donors, innovators, policymakers, service user representatives, and experts in knowledge transfer and global health network initiatives.
In November of 2013, The Meriden Family Programme was asked to submit details of its work for inclusion in the MHIN “Data Repository”, a showcase of global mental health innovations housing a diverse range of resources, including intervention and training manuals, evaluation protocols, publications and multi-media resources. We were delighted to be invited to be included in this resource and were able to submit details prior to the repository going live at the World Innovation Summit for Health in Qatar (10th -11th December, 2013).
The repository can now be accessed at 
To find out more about how you can become involved in the work of MHIN, or to sign up to the MHIN newsletter, please contact

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Latest Updates*

The latest references including those on Siblings and Mental Health can now be accessed in our 'Research, Publications and Resources' section.  There are also links to useful websites and resources providing advice and guidance for Siblings of people who suffer from mental illness.  These include the 'E-Sibling Project' providing peer support and information on psychosis, and the new online network from Rethink 'Rethink Siblings'.

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Caring for Yourself



Rethink Mental Illness and the Meriden Family Programme have created a new resource called Caring for Yourself which has been developed to help carers, family and friends who support someone with a mental health problem.

Caring for Yourself is a self-help workbook in eight parts that can be used in an entirely flexible way. Launched in Carers Week in 2012, the workbook is now available as a very useful information and educational resource designed to help carers. It will also be helpful for professionals who work with carers so that they can refer carers to the resource where appropriate.  To download the guide please click on the links below

Each of the eight parts of the workbook cover a different topic:
1.    Introduction
2.    Being a carer
3.    Information
The self-contained workbook can be used at the carers own pace and in their own time. It can be used along with a training programme for carers such as Rethink Mental Illness Caring and Coping Programme or Meriden’s Caring for Carers Programme or it can be used independently.
The resource is available online and is free to download. However, Caring for Yourself cannot be completed online. Carers who are unable to download a copy and who would like further information should contact:
Sam Farooq on 0121 301 2896 or email

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The Dublin Declaration

On Friday, 24th May, over 193 delegates from 21 European countries met in Dublin to discuss the needs of family carers for people with mental ill health. Addressing the conference Dr Tonio Borg, EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Affairs stressed the importance of family involvement in mental health care across Europe.

 The Irish Minister of State, Kathleen Lynch TD declared at the conference that good mental health was a partnership between government, professionals, people with self-experience of mental ill health and family members.
Throughout the day, the audience heard presentations on the importance of family involvement, the need for education, quality information and communication in helping families to cope with mental ill health.
Against this background, the delegates unanimously agreed The Dublin Declaration 2013 please click here to read the declaration

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Caring for Yourself

If you have used the Caring for Yourself self-help manual we would be really grateful if you could take a few moments to complete a feedback sheet.  Your experience of using the manual will help us to review and develop the content.  You can access the feedback sheet by clicking on this link

Feedback Form - Final.pdf

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Team Travels to Nova Scotia


Dr Grainne Fadden, Meriden Family Programme Director, and Chris Mansell, Deputy Director, held two full-day workshops on June 21st and 22nd in Nova Scotia, Canada. The themes for the 2 sessions were "Developing Collaborative Practice between Consumers, Family Members and Service Providers" and "Information Sharing - Training the Trainer".

Dr. David Shiers, GP and family member, also made up part of the Meriden Family Programme presenting team. The sessions were extremely well received and plans are underway for the Programme to return in 2012.

The Capital Health  newsletter "Mental Health Happenings" reports on the visit.

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Supporting Parents with Mental Health Problems

On 22nd September Paula Conneely and Julia Smith, Clinical Specialists with the Meriden Family Programme will be presenting at the Pavilion conference "Supporting parents with mental health issues and understanding the impact on their children "

In a recent article in the Guardian, Rhian Beynon, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Family Action commented:
"Up to 450,000 adults with mental health difficulties are also parents. Parental and child mental health are closely linked...While adults may succeed in obtaining treatment for mental health difficulties, health and social services often fail to consider the impact upon their family members – and often don’t want to pay for family-focused support.
Both a large body of clinical evidence and the experience of Family Action shows that parents with mental health difficulties can be great parents providing they get support to manage their condition, run their household and care for their children.
The prevention of children’s mental health difficulties, therefore, starts more often than not with integrated health and social services support for their parents.’

This conference addresses how services need to work on behalf of both parent and child in order to manage the impact on the child, whilst supporting the parent. Speakers also include representatives from Family Action, MIND, Barnardos and the Department of Health.

conference programme.pdf

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Carers Matter – Everybody’s Business (CMEB)

CMEB has been developed in partnership with carers, carers organisations and major stakeholders including the Meriden Family Programme. It was commissioned by the Department of Health to provide a set of common core principles and national standards for working with carers. CMEB is a free at the point of access learning and development framework with supporting resources for general and specialist use across a wide range of organisations.

CMEB helps managers and those in a learning and development role to understand what they can do in relation to up-skilling their staff to work in partnership with carers. It is useful for a wide variety of purposes, from information gathering to planning, to commissioning, designing and delivering learning and development.
CMEB is currently a free resource downloadable from Skills for Care and Skills for Health’s websites:

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Opportunity for Family Work Training in Manchester

The Meriden programme is pleased to offer an exciting 5-day training opportunity in family work in Central Manchester, 10th October - 14 October, which we hope will appeal to clinicians who are unable to attend training in Birmingham.  For more details please see the event document under the Training and Conferences link.

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Newsletter - August 2012

The latest volume of the Meriden newsletter (August 2012) has been published and you can find a copy of this on our  website.

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