ESSEX MIND AND SPIRIT
We are a community organisation that supports people by raising awareness of spiritual care in Mental Health recovery.
An important part of this work includes promoting respect for people’s beliefs and practices from faith traditions other than their own. This includes those beliefs of people who claim no religious affiliation…
We are currently developing our social media platforms. As soon as they’re ready we’ll let you know through our newsletters and the Apps themselves…
© Essex Mind and Spirit, 2012-
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We are a community organisation that supports people by raising awareness
of spiritual care in mental health recovery.
An important part of this work includes promoting respect for people’s beliefs and practices from faith traditions other than our own. This includes those beliefs of people who claim no religious affiliation, but nonetheless affirm themselves as spiritual beings.
Our Aims are to: -
- Coordinate a multi agency approach to mental health and spirituality issues across Essex and take an overall facilitating role to promote awareness of the benefits of holistic care.
- Establish, equip and support local Cluster Groups. Anyone can join a Cluster Group. This is a forum for professionals, and people who have experience as users of mental health services and who have beliefs, to meet and participate in workshops and discussion about spirituality issues. Each participant is encouraged to act in his or her own faith community or workplace to enable spiritual care to be recognized and engaged to facilitate an individual’s recovery.
- Provide training for faith communities, service providers and other relevant organisations.
- Organise information conferences and seminars, exhibitions, presentations and distribute literature.
Research shows that many people recover more quickly and more completely from an episode of mental ill health, including serious illness, when spiritual support is available to them. This support may be from religious communities, their leaders or others who are suitably sensitive and skilled.
The Project to Audit Faith/Belief-
Sometimes one needs to be reminded of the sheer value of good teamwork and what it can achieve. The research undertaken in 2014-
Despite having full professional lives, Sidra Naeem our secretary and the other EMS Cluster Group Chairs, together with Jan Hutchinson our Treasurer, other members of the Steering Group and Bill Coomber from Praxis Proactive Solutions Ltd (PPSLtd), who strategically steered the project, have given generously of their time, sending out questionnaires, coordinating responses, carrying out engagement processes and generally promoting the project, to the point where this full report is the result.
Spirituality is defined as:
‘the essential human, personal and interpersonal dimension which integrates and transcends the cultural, religious, psychological, social and emotional aspects of the person,(and is).. more specifically concerned with the (person’s) soul or spirit’
(brackets added for clarity)
Dr. Sarah Eagger
speaking at the 2009, Essex Mind and Spirit Conference
Dementia and Spirituality Conference, Chelmsford Cathedral 2017
Since our conference in April 2017 at Chelmsford Cathedral on Dementia and Spirituality, it is exciting to report on the delivery of several of the recommendations which arose as a result of the conference, and highlighted on pages 17-
Here is an invitation to a workshop entitled ‘Understanding Faith and Cultural Needs in Dementia’ which was facilitated by Shama Kamar who is STP Mental Health Programme Manager for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough in March 2018. It came about in direct response to the task highlighted in the post-
A consistent theme running through all the ‘minimalist’ and ‘maximalist’ recommendations for future work and development set out on pages 17 and 18 of the report is the need for EMS to network more effectively with regard to working with those living with dementia and their carers, and following the conference in 2017 the Chair of EMS, The Rev’d Canon Ivor Moody, has joined both the Dementia Action Alliance Local Chairs meetings, and the Pan Essex Dementia Action Alliance group, both of which meet at the Essex County Council.
As suggested in the post conference report, the newly formed Essex Faith Covenant https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrVYj-
Another of the report’s recommendations was that EMS through its contacts and website offers support, guidance and information to any who might come seeking the same, perhaps as a carer or someone who has recently received a diagnosis of dementia. We are delighted that Mark Neville, who is the DAA Coordinator for Essex and who facilitated my joining the local DAA group and the Pan Essex Dementia Action Alliance, has agreed in turn to join the EMS Steering Group, and in due course we are hoping to work with him to progress another of the post conference report recommendations, to work with other faith groups and organisations to offer advice and resources to help them become more dementia friendly.
Our association with Mark and The Alzheimers Society also means that, along with the Essex Faith Covenant, we can give the Society space here to let people know what resources are out there and some of the help that is available to those living with and managing dementia. Mark writes……..
“One clear message from people living with dementia, their loved ones and carers is that timely and appropriate information and support is vital in helping them manage the dementia and the Alzheimer’s Society is committed to being the ‘go to’ service for people living with dementia, etc. However, in order to meet the needs of the growing number of people with dementia (a person is diagnosed every 3 minutes in the UK) services and organisations must work in partnership and pool all our resources and knowledge. We must also have clearly identified goals and ways of assessing and monitoring our successes’ in ensuring that people with dementia are still able to participate in society.
The Alzheimer’s Society is looking forward to continue to work closely with EMS.”
If you or a loved one has recently received a diagnosis of dementia, or know someone who has, and don’t know what the next step is, where to go or what the options are, please contact:
The Alzheimers Society (Essex)
32 Wharf Road
Office: (01245) 260911 (8am – 6pm Monday to Friday)