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Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Adults Mental Health Support

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APRIL 2020

Now we’re talking - coming together in isolation

Organisations across the county have joined forces to launch a wellbeing campaign and additional mental health support for people during the coronavirus outbreak.

‘Now We’re Talking’, encourages people to get talking to combat loneliness whilst self-isolating, and to seek help if they are struggling with their mental health.

The campaign, led by the local authority, NHS and third sector also directs people to increased mental health support available including:

  • Lifeline Plus - a mental health and wellbeing helpline for people aged 18 and over living in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, is available Monday-Friday between 9am and 2pm via freephone 0808 808 2121. The line will support people to manage their wellbeing, provide self-help advice or signpost to other organisations for particular concerns.

7 days a week, between 2pm and 11pm the same number is Lifeline, managed by Lifecraft who provide support for those in mental health distress: 0808 808 2121.

  • Qwell - an online wellbeing support, including educational and self-help articles and peer-topeer support via forums. Adults are also able to receive help from qualified counsellors via dropin or scheduled online chat sessions. qwell.io

  • Keep Your Head – this website brings together all the mental health support available across the county - www.keep-your-head.com/now


Dr Liz Robin, Director of Public Health at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “Local people are making a huge contribution by following the government’s instruction to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives. But we recognise these measures mean that nearly all of us will have made changes to our daily routines, and many of us may be experiencing uncertainty, anxiety, or stress.

“Maintaining our mental health and wellbeing is incredibly important, especially at times like this. So taking time to call a friend or family member, and talking about the way that we feel, and some of the things that we may be worried about will help”.


Aly Anderson, CEO of CPSL Mind adds: “Recognising the power of talking, charities and services have partnered to develop a new helpline during coronavirus. We will provide a listening ear for people to share how they are feeling or issues they are facing right now. We will support people to manage their wellbeing, learn self-help skills or to access other support for particular concerns; such as bereavement, employment or those that are caring for others.”


Tracy Dowling, Chief Executive at Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is a challenging time for everyone, and this campaign highlights how we can all look after our mental health and each other. CPFT continues to provide specialist mental health support for those who require further help. In the current climate we’ve had to adapt our services and are already offering video consultations rather than face-to-face appointments where appropriate. We have also increased the support in our crisis services to ensure people who need urgent help can access it quickly.”


The campaign is led by Cambridgeshire County Council, Peterborough City Council, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group and a number of charities including Cambridgeshire Peterborough and South Lincolnshire Mind, and Lifecraft.

The mental health campaign, Now We’re Talking, is supported by BBC Radio Cambridgeshire.

Tuesday 7th April 2020

Charities bring additional mental health and wellbeing support to Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Two local mental health charities are responding to this time of incredible change and challenge for our communities. Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire (CPSL) Mind has launched an online wellbeing service and Lifecraft have extended the hours of their Lifeline mental health helpline.

Adults in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough are now able access a brand new free online mental health wellbeing service, Qwell, via the charity website www.CPSLMind.org.uk

Individuals will be able to access a range of materials to support and assist them with their psychological wellbeing, including educational and self-help articles and peer-to-peer support via forums – with the option to contribute their own articles or forum entries.

Adults are also able to receive help from qualified counsellors via drop-in or scheduled online chat sessions.

Lifeline, the established confidential and anonymous mental health helpline has extended its hours of support by an extra five hours a day and is now available from 2pm onwards – 11pm on Freephone 0808 808 2121.

For people that already face significant stresses in their lives, the level of anxiety can be difficult to contain in this environment and both charities are seeing increased levels of distress.

“At CPSL Mind, our vision is a society in which everyone has positive mental health and feels part of a connected community – when Qwell was planned as part of our Good Life service we could not have imagined social distancing and dramatic changes impacting on the way we are currently living”, explains CPSL Mind CEO, Aly Anderson.

“We are all adapting to the online environment to stay in touch. So connecting individuals with both each other and trained professional counsellors in safe, supportive online communities via Qwell will truly enhance the support on offer to our community.”

Dr Lynne Green, XenZone’s Chief Clinical Officer says, “we encourage adults to use this service as a source of support during this difficult time. We would urge people not to wait until they are at crisis point before reaching out for help - we can provide support through the peaks and troughs but prevention is always the best way forward”. 

By launching now as part of a countywide joined-up health response to the coronavirus crisis there will be a choice of additional mental health support which is as accessible as possible for everyone, regardless of their circumstances.

Both services are available across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. Gemma Barron, Chief Executive Officer of Lifecraft says, “We are really pleased to be able to further support residents at this time. Support and information to someone experiencing mental distress or anyone supporting someone in distress is hugely important, providing a listening ear alongside other partners and health services can only be a good thing particularly at this time”.

Qwell, a new online addition to the Good Life Service that is now avaliable.

To find out more please watch this short video presentation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxU6iFJDAvo

CPSL MIND: "Qwell is a free, online support and wellbeing community for adults in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. By providing online support in addition to our community-based services, we are ensuring that mental health support is as accessible as possible for everyone regardless of their circumstances."

MARCH 2020

Coronavirus Updates

In these difficult times it can be hard and stressful trying to keep informed and connected with updates on the coronavirus, so Learning Disability England have put together a dedicated page on their website with up to date information that is easy to understand and read. You can go to their pages on the coronavirus by clicking here.

Photosymbols have put together an easy to read and clear poster you can download here. And Inclusion North have also put together a clear document with everything you need to know about the coronavirus and how to stay safe which you can view and download here.

Covid 19 poster

MARCH 2020

Groundwork East LogoGet Outdoors; Get Active

Taking time to enjoy green spaces and increase physical activity can have profound positive impacts on our physical health and mental wellbeing, but sometimes it may be difficult to find things to do or people to do them with. If you’re looking for ways to feel more relaxed and connected with nature and other people in your neighbourhood, then Groundwork East’s “Get Outdoors, Get Active” sessions might be a great place to start.

Over 6 weeks, starting from 17th March we will be getting our hands dirty and enjoying time outdoors with others in the community to help rejuvenate green space in Whittlesey. If you would like to get involved, get in touch with Ashley (ashley.lydiate@groundwork.org.uk) for more information and to book your place.

About Groundwork

At Groundwork, we’re passionate about creating a future where every neighbourhood is vibrant and green, every community is strong and able to shape its own destiny and no-one is held back by their background or circumstances. We help people gain confidence and skills, get into training and work, protect and improve green spaces, lead more active lives and overcome significant challenges such as poverty, isolation, low skills and poor health.


The popularity of walking versions of sports is growing and Living Sport are looking to help establish further opportunities across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough with local partners.

As part of our strategic priority to increase physical activity levels amongst older people and help make sport and physical activity more accessible, Living Sport want to help develop a coaching workforce that is skilled and confident in helping those around 50+ be physically active. Walking Sports play an important element within the strategy.

In partnership with the Governing Bodies of Sport, Living Sport are organising two walking sports activator workshops which are suitable for any organisation wanting to develop a walking sport offer within their setting. Walking Sports do not have the high impact or strenuous level of activity that standard versions of the same games require so are an ideal opportunity for people looking to return to sport, recover from injury or simply play the sport they loved at a slower pace.

The activator courses will take place at the Hive Leisure Centre, Ely in March and April 2020.

The courses would be suitable for ex players, sports coaches, community workers, health and social care workers and sports centre staff. The time will be spent getting a feel for the walking version of the sports, how to lead, enthuse and promote activity and deliver safe and enjoy sessions. This is not a coaching qualification. 

For more info please visit the Living Sport website


Sunday 1 March 2020

Walking Cricket Activator Course in partnership with ECB

Hive Leisure Centre, Ely


Cost: £40

Sunday 26 April 2020

Walking Basketball Activator Course in partnership with Walking Basketball UK

Hive Leisure Centre, Ely


Cost: £40

Please feel free to pass on this information to anyone you feel these courses might be of interest too.

To compliment these Activator courses we have the Coaching Older People workshop, running on 19th May, 6.30-9.30pm at Milton Community Centre, Cambridge, if you haven’t yet booked your space book quickly, spaces are filling up. Information about the workshop can be found on our website were you can also book places. Cost is free for volunteers and £20 for any professional staff / paid coaches. If you are a volunteer or wish to book volunteers on please contact Tom Oliver for a discount code. If anybody has any questions then please contact Tom Oliver. If anyone wishes to book on both an Activator course and the Coaching Older People Workshop please contact Tom Oliver for a discounted price.


ocd event

Every Mind Matters logo

Football activity with Heads Up - 3rd to 6th January 2020

Since the successful launch of the Every Mind Matters campaign on the 7th October 2019. There have been over one million completions of “Your Mind Plan”, designed to help people deal with stress and anxiety, boost their mood, improve their sleep and help them feel more in control.

This month Every Mind Matters are collaborating with the Heads Up campaign, a partnership between Heads Together and The FA, to harness the power of football and start the biggest ever conversation on mental health amongst the football community.

As announced by The FA on 2nd December 2019, the kick-off of all Emirates FA Cup Third Round matches (4th - 6th January 2020) will be delayed by one minute. A new film narrated by His Royal Highness, The Duke of Cambridge will be played before the matches, encouraging football fans to ‘Take A Minute’ to start taking action to look after their mental health and that of their family and friends. The one minute film features famous faces from the world of football, including Frank Lampard, Harry Maguire and Alex Scott. 


It was World Mental Health Day on the 10th October!

It was a great day of fighting against the stigma around mental health challenges and coming together to help support one another. We took our stall to an event on the Friday in Peterborough where we had loads of meaningful conversations with people around the topic of suicide prevention and where you can go for support with your mental health. 

Peterborough event board

Every Mind Matters

Public Health England launches ‘Every Mind Matters’, the first national NHS mental health campaign.

We don’t need to wait until we are struggling with our mental health; there are lots of things we can do to protect ourselves and prevent problems escalating, just as we do with our physical health.
The new Every Mind Matters campaign encourages adults to be more aware of their mental health and helps them to discover simple steps to look after their mental health and wellbeing.
Every Mind Matters offers a range of useful resources that help spot the signs of common mental health concerns, provides practical self-care tips and guidance and, importantly, explains when to seek further support.
It also has a free NHS-approved online tool on the Every Mind Matters website, which helps people build an action plan to deal with stress and anxiety, boost their mood, improve their sleep and help them feel more in control.

To learn more about how to look after your mental health and create your own action plan, visit: https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/

Every Mind Matters


Cambridge & Fenland Community Arts Creative Courses 2019/20 - there's still time to apply!

Cambridge & Fenland Community Arts Creative Courses is still taking expressions of interest for their yearlong accredited programme, with courses starting w/c 9 Sept.  The programme and expression of interest form can be downloaded here, or submit online at https://www.camcommarts.org.uk/join-a-course.



Check out these short videos to find out more about our drama and music courses and for info on how to get involved and how we work, enabling people to improve their mental health using creativity – especially helpful if you missed meeting us at our Open Days!

MAY 2019

Psychological Well-being Service Virtual Reality Therapy

OVR BBC Breakfast 21st May 2019 from Oxford VR on Vimeo.

Here's a snippet about the therapy from the CPFT website: "The Psychological Wellbeing Service have added virtual reality (VR) to our digital therapies’ library.  This is state-of-the-art technology is currently being used for treatment of Height Phobia. We have partnered with a company called 'Oxford VR' to bring this ground-breaking technology into the service. VR treatment is based on a computer-generated environment which creates powerful simulations of real-life scenarios that trigger similar psychological and physiological responses as experienced by patients when distressed i.e. the mind and body behave as if it were real. Therefore, the lessons learned in VR are transferable to everyday life situations."

Click here to read more..

Recovery and Inclusion Contract Rentender

As you may already be aware, CPSL Mind has just been awarded the county-wide Recovery and Inclusion contract funded by Cambridgeshire County Council, Peterborough City Council and Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

This new service will replace several different contracts that are currently delivered by a number of different providers across the county. This includes the Wellbeing and Stepping Forward Services delivered by CPSL Mind; the Specialist Mental Health Home and Community Support Services delivered by CPSL Mind (Support2Recovery) and Metropolitan and some of the services currently provided by Lifecraft, Red 2 Green and Richmond Fellowship.

Between now and the start of the new service on 2 September 2019, referrals into all of these services will be affected to some degree. Below we outline the current position on referrals to CPSL Mind services.  Please contact the other providers directly for information about their services between now and the new contract start date.

CPSL Mind Referrals

While, on the one hand, the new Recovery and Inclusion contract presents a unique opportunity to provide a new and exciting service across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, on the other it does mean that there will be changes in the way services are accessed and delivered both during and after the transition period.

We hope to minimise any frustrations and/or concerns by communicating with our clients, staff and stakeholders on a regular basis and answering any questions in an open and honest way throughout this transition process.

Please see information below on ‘next steps’ in relation to referrals into our existing Wellbeing Service, Stepping Forward and Specialist Mental Health Home and Community Support (Support2Recovery) clients.

Next steps:  Specialist Mental Health Home and Community Support Referrals

Individuals who are assessed as requiring specialist mental health care packages will continue to receive support as part of the new contract; though the way in which that support is delivered will change and develop over time.

Between now and the start of the new service, new specialist mental health Home and Community Support referrals can still be made to CPSL Mind. However, it would be very helpful for us to have involvement at the assessment stage wherever possible, particularly during this transition period. Please contact either myself or Linda Leigh – Linda.leigh@cpslmind.org.uk – in the first instance

Next steps: Wellbeing and Stepping Forward Services Referrals

As from Monday 13 May, we will no longer be taking referrals for 1:1 support from the Wellbeing and Stepping Forward services. This is so that we can meet the 1:1 needs of those individuals already in service together with those on the current waiting list.

However, we will still be taking referrals for our wellbeing workshops and peer support groups across the county and have recently increased the capacity of these aspects of the service. Please email us at wellbeing@cpslmind.org.uk or phone us at any of our three offices for more information:


01223 311320


01733 362900

St Neots

01480 470 480

Further information

Over the coming weeks we will be sending you more information about the new Recovery and Inclusion Service, usually by email.  We would be very grateful if you could cascade this and future emails so as to ensure that everyone receives this information in a timely way.

We will also be arranging a number of stakeholder events to introduce the service in more detail and answer any questions. Details of these events will be sent by email, but will also be posted on our website – www.cpslmind.org.uk. Please note that for more information about CPSL Mind in general, you can also sign up for our E-bulletin via the website.

We really appreciate your support in helping us to make this service transition as smooth as possible for everyone, so please do let us know if you have any questions or concerns either by contacting me direct on 01223 311320 or emailing me at hannah.turner@cpslmind.org.uk 

Please note: Referrals into our IAPT service (Changing Lives), Perinatal Service and Sanctuary (via FRS 111 Option2) will continue unchanged.

The Advancing Mental Health Equality Resource has now been published and is available to download from the Royal College of Psychiatrists website. The AMHE Resource was commissioned by NHS England to support delivery of the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health and the NHS Long Term Plan.

The resource is a tool which outlines comprehensive and practical steps for commissioners and service providers to reduce inequalities in an achievable and measurable way. It provides detailed guidance and methods on how to identify and reduce inequalities related to mental health support, care and treatment. It will also support commissioners and service providers to evaluate and review their services, to measure the impact of changes and to identify areas for improvement.

The AMHE Resource has been coproduced with a wide-range of stakeholders including experts by experience, ALBs, commissioners, providers and third sector organisations.

For questions on the resource and accompanying appendices and helpful resources, please contact the Project Manager at Dominique.gardner@rcpsych.ac.uk.

You can view and download the Advancing Mental Health Equality Resource here.


Arts on prescription for adultsArts on Prescription are looking for people interested in Arts on Prescription at the Norris Museum in St Ives again - They start a new series on Wednesday 9th of January and I still have spaces. These are free art workshops for people with anxiety, depression or any other mental health problems. 

They also have spaces on the rolling programmes of Arts on Prescription art workshops at the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in Cambridge from 1-3pm on Tuesdays, and at the Norris Museum in St Ives from 1-3pm on Wednesdays, both of which have funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund to continue until July 2019.  They will run another ten week series of art workshops at Peterborough Museum from 3-5pm on Thursdays starting on 7th of February, as the pilot series at Peterborough Museum has gone really well with many positive responses written in evaluation, such as:

'This course has brought me out of myself and given me something to look forward to each week.  I wish it could continue.'

'I have loved it...  Thank you again for an inspiring and nurturing course.'

If you would like to take part in one or more workshops please fill out a referral form here.


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