Opportunities for you to get involved

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People participation

Participation is "working together to improve the experiences and outcomes of our services." People Participation involves bringing together service users, carers, families, staff and our wider communities as equal partners working to shape and deliver outstanding mental health services for the benefit of everyone. We know that when care and services are designed and delivered in collaboration with people who use them, there will be better outcomes for all.

Become a member

Your mental health trust needs your voice. Are you passionate about the people of Norfolk and Suffolk receiving the best possible care from their mental health trust? Then we need you to join our membership.

Join our Recovery College

Our Recovery College provides educational workshops and courses. All our courses have been designed to support people experiencing mental health challenges to learn skills and strategies.

Be a part of research

We have a number of research studies that might suit you. 


Our volunteers are worth their weight in gold and we appreciate how they give up their time to help us and the people we care for.

Feedback events and current projects

Help shape our services and the experiences of people who use them by joining our projects and feedback events. Current opportunities are provided below.

Get involved in our Hellesdon New Wards project

Hellesdon New Wards logo We are asking service users and carers with recent experience of our inpatient wards to help us design new wards. This will further improve quality and safety at Hellesdon Hospital in Norwich.

Find out more about this opportunity.

Chance to sign up for recruitment training

People who use our services and their carers and families have the chance to sign up for training to be involved in recruiting new staff.

The values-based recruitment training is being held to give service users and their families the skills to be involved in interviews and shape the future of NSFT.

We are committed to involving people who use mental health services and their carers or families through the People Participation. 

Sessions are capped at eight people so spaces are limited, and they will be booked on a first come-first served basis.

The training will be via Microsoft Teams and anyone who has difficulties accessing this or needs further support can email people.participation@nsft.nhs.uk.

Available training dates are:

  • 9 June 2022 - 9:30 to 13:00,
  • 21 June 2022 - 13:00 to 16:30,
  • 4 July 2022 - 9:30 to 12:30,
  • 19 July 2022 - 13:00 to 16:00.

To sign up go to https://forms.office.com/r/HSEfWeW0Sp.

Young People’s Participation in Norfolk and Waveney

Are you passionate about improving mental health services? Are you 14-25 years old? Get involved with participation and get your voice heard.

Our Young People's Participation group is a group for young people aged 14-25 who have their own experiences with mental health recovery, whether it’s your own lived experience or you have experience caring for someone going through their own recovery journey; and for anyone who has a passion for improving mental health services.

The group meets virtually via Microsoft Teams, fortnightly on Tuesday's at 18:00 until 19:30.

To register your interest visit https://forms.office.com/r/HAr7UJhZ11


Help us to advance mental health equalities

Advancing mental health equalities logo Led by The Royal College of Psychiatrists, the Advancing Mental Health Equalities (AMHE) project runs until September 2024.

The purpose of this project is to reduce health inequalities so that everyone can get equal access to mental healthcare and improved esperiences. Achieved by working with staff and service users from across the Trust, as well as community groups and partner agencies.

We are one of 17 organisations from across the country taking part. We meet with those other organisations to share ideas, learning and best practice.

Dr Uju Ugochukwu, Consultant Psychiatrist and Medical Director for Quality leads our project team. The team are identifying the barriers preventing certain communities from accessing local mental health services by using Quality Improvement methodologies.

The project team have the task of identifying three separate populations to focus on. The team have established their first two communities of focus, being:

  • Black men,
  • Refugees and forced migrants.

With one more group to decide on, we have almost completed a key aspect of the first phase of the four-step plan set out by Royal College of Psychiatrists:

  1. Identify the inequalities
  2. Design new ways of doing things
  3. Test those ideas
  4. Deliver improvements. 

Each of the groups need a project team working together with the overarching project. 

How can you help

We are looking for enthusiastic volunteers from each of our chosen communities who have experienced receiving care from us, or anyone who has supported someone from one of these communities to receive care us in the last five years.

You will need to actively and positively listen to those with experience of our services and approach connecting with others in an empathetic, compassionate and supportive way, that reflects our Trust values of Respectfully, Positively and Together.

What to expect

We would like our volunteers to join a fortnightly Microsoft Teams meeting where they can be comfortable in sharing ideas and feedback to shape the outcomes of the project.

You will regularly work with a team of people from a range of different services and backgrounds and we want you to feel comfortable and confident in presenting your own views and representing the views of others within a group setting. 

If joining the team isn’t for you, there are other ways to share your experiences such as workshops, one to one interviews and surveys conducted by our Research department (please see 'Next steps' to get involved).

How will we support you

You will need access to a computer to attend fortnightly Microsoft Teams meetings. If computer access is an issue for you, we are happy to talk to you about ways of overcoming that barrier.

You will also need to be able to have time to read documents before meetings.

This is a voluntary role, but expenses would be paid for attendance at the Microsoft Teams meetings and any travel costs incurred.

We will be able to offer you training in Quality Improvement skills and practices.

One to one support with our Quality Improvement People Participation Coordinator to help you in your role will also be available.

Next steps

If you are interested in this opportunity please email QI.Team@nsft.nhs.uk and tell us how and why you would like to be involved. You can use this email if you have any questions as well.

You can also call our People participation Coordinator, Gemma Browne, on 07825 208323 to have an informal chat.

If you are interested in helping our Research Department by attending workshops, one-to-one interviews, or completing surveys, please contact researchinfo@nsft.nhs.uk and tell us how involved you would like to be or if you have any questions. Note that your involvement can be confidential if you prefer, and the research team will support you fully through the process.

We look forward to working with you.

Get involved in our quality improvement projects

Gemma, the People Participation Coordinator with our Trust’s Quality Improvement (QI) Team is inviting people with experience of using our services to join our improvement projects.

Gemma says "We want to make sure that every single QI project has service user and carer involvement as the only way to make successful changes and for services to evolve is to ensure their voices are heard and views taken into account."

If you would like to get involved please email Gemma for more information at QI.Team@nsft.nhs.uk.

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