Participation Post - Issue 5

Welcome to the 5th issue of the Participation Post newsletter.

Celebrating Black History Month – Proud to Be!

Secure and Forensic Services found ways to raise awareness and celebrate Black History Month in October. 
Each day, the care group sent out to all staff and shared quotes from inspirational black leaders and role models, music, poetry, quizzes and thought-provoking reading and documentaries with service users.
There were also culture nights, traditional dance and music events and staff and service user training sessions about the challenges faced by the BME community.
The Care Group also had positive staff and service user representation at the NSFT Black History Month Event, a truly colourful, reflective and inspirational event.
At the start of the October Inpatient Working Together Group each participant was asked to introduce themselves, share their choice of an inspirational Black role model and talk about the positive impact they had on them. During the Service Improvement Advisory group, the care group reflected on the NHSE Adult Secure Care 2018 ‘Black Voices’ project which captured the experiences and data surrounding black men detained in secure hospitals. The session aimed to support members to empathise with the experiences of a marginalised yet over-represented group, and for them to offer advice on what our services could do tackle issues of racism and discrimination.
One service user said: “This was a really tough session but it has helped me better understand some of the issues for our black patients.”


Would you like to get involved?

Are you a Young Person aged 14-25 and live in the Norfolk and Waveney area?
Would you like to get involved in improving your mental health service? Join our Young People’s Participation Group. We meet fortnightly on Tuesdays from 7pm via Microsoft Teams.
Email or call her on 07818 537990.
The older persons community service in Norwich and North Norfolk have established a working together group and are looking to expand.
Are you someone who has accessed, or cared for someone who has accessed services in the last two years? Would you like to be involved in how we learn, design and deliver our services?
Email Robyn Ward,, or call her on 07385 413902.


Introducing . . . 

Polly Johnson 
People Participation Lead for the West and South Norfolk Care Group

Hi everyone, I started in September so am still fairly new to this role. In my recent professional life, I have been involved in the delivery of restorative justice, mental health, and addiction services, which included co-production work. However, and I think more importantly, I bring lived experience of mental health recovery, both my own and as a carer. I have also been involved in sharing my own lived experience in the co-production of domestic abuse and mental health services, and truly believe that having my voice heard has empowered me in my own recovery. 
My hope in this role is that you will want to be involved in participation opportunities that are easy to access and feel representative of everyone that is in contact with our services. This might include being involved in giving feedback, joining an interview panel, taking part in projects or groups, or something we haven’t thought of yet. Everything you bring to participation work has a direct impact on how services are designed and delivered in your local area, and your contribution is unique, valued and welcomed. 
I love this quote from Brené Brown, and I hope we can embed this in our work together: “In order to empathise with someone’s experience you must be willing to believe them as they see it and not how you imagine their experience to be.”
My email is 


Leadership and development group

The Leadership and Development Group is an opportunity for all staff and service users to be involved in service development. We are using a ‘Spoke and Hub’ model (right). Each of the development projects are worked on in the ‘spoke’ groups – these feed into the central hub, which oversees the projects.
Ideas for the spoke projects can come from anyone – service users, staff or carers.
One recent project is agreeing the content for a display screen at Walker Close. Through suggestions made from two people who have used the service there were some very clear ideas about what information is important and how this should look. As soon as the IT related to this is complete we look forward to having a great visual display and an update in a future edition of Participation Post.
Workforce recruitment and development is another of the spoke projects. Having the right staff is central to offering the right sort of service. As well as having people with learning disabilities or autism on interview panels, we are also exploring exciting ways for people to be part of the recruitment journey using podcasts to talk about good service.
This is an exciting time to be part of the Learning Disability and Autism Specialist Pathway, a place where everyone has a voice and participation is at the top of our agendas. 
In the image above there is a spoke called ‘ideas’. If anyone has an idea that could be added, get in touch.
Contact Margaret Tanner, People Participation Lead, Learning Disability and Autism Specialist Pathway and Education and Training, via


Creative corner

Work has been taking place with young people, staff and a local artist to make the environment more appropriate people and families who use Walker Close.
This was based on feedback received from a carer and young person who felt that the environment was too clinical and so young people have been producing artwork, doing some work in the gardens and painting some of the outside spaces to make it an environment that they find more comfortable and relaxing.


Contact us

Great Yarmouth and Waveney
(Adult and Older People)
Gary Walker 07785 692926
Norwich and North Norfolk (Adult and Older People)
Robyn Ward 07771 663804
West and South Norfolk (Adult and Older People)
Polly Johnson 07557166856
East Suffolk (Adult and Older People)
Eddie Cross 07795 332547
West Suffolk (Adult and Older People)
Anna Russell 07920 786216
Children and Young People’s Services Norfolk/Waveney
Lucy North 07818 537990
Children and Young People’s Service Suffolk
Sophie Davies 07342 066589
Perinatal Mental Health, young people’s inpatient services, Early Intervention in Psychosis, and Eating Disorder services
Jodie Butcher 07385 417355
Secure and Forensic Services
Su Pashley 01603 707500
Learning Disability and Autism Specialist Pathway and Education and Training
Margaret Tanner 07833 285276



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