A new community recovery service for Islanders struggling with complex mental health needs is now available thanks to a partnership between the Isle of Wight NHS Trust and the Southern Housing Group.

The mental health transformation plans are moving ahead with the development of a community-based mental health recovery service for people with complex mental health needs.

Woodlands, a 10-bed rehabilitation ward based in Wootton, is being converted into a supported community housing scheme to provide wraparound support to help residents to move towards independent living.

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The Mental Health Recovery Service will focus on providing the right support to enable people to manage their own mental health conditions and to develop personalised and holistic recovery plans. This approach supports people on their recovery journey in a positive, proactive way, building on their strengths and supporting them to develop personal goals.

Residents will have practical support with CV writing, budgeting and managing bills and they will be encouraged to build on the therapeutic relationship with their mental health support team, to reinforce positive behaviour to adopt positive social and life skills.

Lesley Stevens, Director of Mental Health and Learning Disabilities, said:

“As part of building our community centred approach, we engaged with our partners and stakeholders, including our staff, people who use our services, their families and carers to agree a way forward to create a comfortable and safe community environment in Woodlands, where residents can access appropriate support and assistance on their recovery journey.

“Our aim is to empower people to live a full, hopeful and meaningful life, despite mental ill health.”

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This recovery service will be provided in partnership with Southern Housing Group. Plans are in place for Woodlands to be refurbished by Southern Housing Group from April, to create a homely setting where residents will have fully furnished bedrooms, communal facilities, and access to a communal garden; with families, carers, and friends able to visit them in a pleasant environment.

Naomi Keyte, Head of Sheltered and Care Services from Southern Housing Group, said:

“We are excited to be part of this new approach, working in partnership with the Isle of Wight NHS Trust and partner organisations to provide a supportive environment where Woodlands’ residents can access support from multi-disciplinary specialist teams, take part in activities that will help promote life skills for independent living, achieve personal goals, meet their wellbeing needs and provide them with employment, training and volunteering opportunities.”

The Mental Health Recovery Service will have an emphasis on engaging with people who have the most complex mental health needs and who are hard to reach in our communities on the Isle of Wight; people may be offered accommodation to this service as part of their recovery plan.

This service will also help to facilitate swift and safe discharge from hospital and reach out to and work with people in their own homes and in their local communities.

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