PRESS RELEASE – 27 November 2013
A new monthly group, to help parents and carers who are supporting a child or young person with emotional and mental health issues, has launched as part of a groundbreaking scheme called The Project.
The group, which is open to parents and carers in East Devon, South Somerset and West Dorset, meets on the third Tuesday of each month at Home Farm Hotel in Wilmington, near Honiton, for two hours of chat and mutual support. Parents, who attended the first meeting on 19th November, have already begun to break down the isolation facing those supporting a child or young person with mental health difficulties, by sharing ideas, experiences and resources.
Home Farm Hotel’s owner, Ashley Gray, who has generously allowed the group private use of a function room within the hotel free of charge, said, “I am very happy to be able to help support this new group, which is providing much needed and valuable support to local parents”.
The Project, which has since September been running separate support groups in Axminster for young people in two age groups – 12-16s and 16-24s – is the inspiration of local mum, Debbie Humberstone.
Debbie explained, “Supporting a child with a mental illness can be bewildering, terrifying and exhausting. The effects of mental illness ripple out far beyond the person with the illness, and yet no support is provided to parents and carers. When my daughter developed mental health issues 5 years ago, we struggled to find the help and support we needed as a family, so this is why I have started up this group, as part of the services offered by The Project. It is open to mums, dads, grandparents, and anyone caring for a young person with mental health problems, regardless of whether they are attending one of our support groups.”
“We aim not just to support parents and carers, but also to gather information about parents’ experiences of local mental health services and feed these back to commissioners and service providers, through Healthwatch Devon, to help improve services in the future,” she said.
More information about The Project’s support groups for young people, and for parents, can be found on their website, www.theprojectyp.org.uk. Alternatively, you can contact Debbie Humberstone, The Project’s Coordinator, on 01404 549045 or 07970 167341 or email info@theprojectYP.org.uk