Writing a new recovery service
People with mental ill health are being encouraged to take control of their own story by writing about it on a new web tool.
The Write to Recovery website helps people create and take control of their own personal stories by providing a stimulus to get the creative juices flowing.
The launch coincided with the tenth anniversary of the Scottish Recovery Network (SRN).
Simon Bradstreet, SRN director, said: “We all have different stories, we all have a different way of viewing our own stories, and we all have a potential to control our own stories, which makes it an important and empowering way to promote a good life and wellbeing.”
Michael Matheson, Minister for Public Health, praised the idea. “It will give valuable support to people with mental health issues on their journey to recovery,” he said.
“It’s important to remember that although a quarter of the Scottish population will experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives, recovery is not only possible but likely. This website will aid that recovery by helping people to realise they are not alone.”
One of the UK’s most successful indie authors, Linda Gillard, officially opened the site at an event in Edinburgh.
Gillard, who suffers from a form of bipolar disorder, became a published author in her 40s whilst “trying to make sense of her condition” through fiction. Her first novel, Emotional Geology, “healed me and healed others”, she said.
The Write to Recovery website doesn’t require participants to write novels, however. Network manager John McCormack said the site would allow “people to define themselves and collate thoughts into meaning. If writing is about anything, it’s about identity.”
The website is the latest example of the SRN’s use of narrative research – learning from people’s personal experiences – to increase knowledge and understanding of mental health recovery.