The Treehouse Children and Family Centre Bersted, Chichester Family Centre, Footprints Family Centre, Worthing and Coastal West Sussex Mind are working together to provide support for those who are experiencing very low moods, feelings of isolation and the pressures of coping with postnatal depression.
The Project meets for weekly groups at:
- The Treehouse Family Centre – Bersted, Laburnum Grove, Bognor Regis, PO22 9HT on Wednesdays from 12 noon to 2pm in term time.
- Chichester Children and Family Centre – St James’ Road Chichester, PO19 7AB on Fridays from 12 noon to 2pm in term time.
- Footprints Family Centre – Crescent Road, Worthing, BN11 1RQ on Thursday from 12 noon to 2pm in term time.
The aim of the project is to improve the mental health and wellbeing of mothers in their first year of being a parent. The use of peer support will be encouraged; it is hoped that participants will feel a sense of ownership towards the support the project will provide.
The project offers support in the form of group work, where there is an opportunity to talk in a friendly environment with others who are experiencing similar difficulties. There will be activities and topics for discussion that have been identified by mothers to reflect the concerns they have expressed.
Individual support can be offered with a view to discussing any concerns they may have and from this discussion organise their own personalised support plan. Group facilitators can be contacted by phone for support and advice: however, this is very time limited therefore there will be signposting to other phone support services.
Another area the project would like to offer support in is for ladies who are now pregnant and are concerned about the possibility of experiencing mental health difficulties post-pregnancy. This may happen if they have experienced PND (Post Natal Depression) with their other children of have a history of mental health issues. This support would come in the form of individual planning sessions to help with reducing stress and anxiety and facilitate practical planning for the future.
The project is also looking at starting their own Facebook page, as not all people like to join in with group work. The aim is to pass on information about local support services, tips and exercises that are useful, as well as topics discussed in any groups. This is also an opportunity to signpost information from the family centres and Coastal West Sussex Mind.