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Workshop aims to debunk myths surrounding self harm
Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust is to host a workshop to help break down the stigma and myths surrounding self harm.

The Understanding and Managing Self Harm workshop will be held at the Professional Development Centre in King’s Lynn on September 24.

Up to 50 guests including health professionals, carers, service users and those working in the voluntary sector, are due to attend the gathering which has been organised in conjunction with partner organisations, Mind, Norfolk Recovery Partnership and the Youth Council.

Helena Crockford, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Adult Psychology Service Lead, West Locality, Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust: “Self harm is a way people cope with difficult emotions and life situations. Often it can seem the only, or best way when other strategies are limited.

“It is associated with a range of mental health problems and often done in secret because people fear negative judgments and feel ashamed of what they are doing.

“We are looking at ways to better support people in West Norfolk, particularly those who repeatedly use self harm as a way to cope. We aim to raise awareness, and dispel some of the myths and judgements, such as people self harming to seek attention.”

The workshop is being held from 9.15am to 1pm and includes:
• Introduction - Marcus Hayward, Locality Manager

• What is self harm - Dr Laurence Potter, Consultant Psychiatrist

• Personal Perspective - Stories from service users

• Managing Self Harm - Helena Crockford, Consultant Clinical Psychologist

• Norfolk Recovery Partnership - Katie Walker, Counselling Psychologist

• West Norfolk Mind - Eddie West-Burnham, Chief Executive, West Norfolk Mind

• Recovery College - Maggie Harrison, Modern Matron, Recovery College Lead, West locality

Helena added: “We will also talk about the kind of help people can access – from online forums and self help information, to local resources and mental health services.

“Overall, we want to convey a hopeful message, that people can and do recover, and go on to lead fulfilling lives.”