Richard's May Blog

Monday, 20 May 2013

Great fun walking 40k for Solent Mind with colleagues and friends on Saturday, raising money and flying the flag for Solent Mind at the Great Divide event. Sussex looked a picture, except when interrupted by horizontal rain. But we survived, and seem to have prospered to the tune of about £1,000. A huge thank you to all our supporters and donors.

The weather in 2012 didn’t just dampen our collective spirits, it made the economics of cultivation – including horticultural therapy at Mayfield - something of a wash out. Remember that Mayfield is a social enterprise that depends on plant sales above all other forms of income. So the Spring Open Day at the end of April was the first indication that 2013 promises sunnier times – economic as well as climatic. With lots more growing space, courtesy of the Social Enterprise Investment Fund, there’s more and better plants for sale this year. And the long range weather forecast shows May getting warmer and warmer.

I really enjoyed an evening with our Community Support staff on Thursday. We often reflect on how people receiving mental health services have been plagued by professionals’ low expectations of them. Mental health services too often stopped people fulfilling their ambitions and dreams. Well for Solent Mind staff and service users, the sky’s the limit. We’re helping people with dementia go swimming (lane swimming for fitness), singing, and even climbing down at the climbing wall at Calshot. Some fantastic stories from some very talented staff.