Mental health staff at The Priestley Unit at Dewsbury and District Hospital have launched a new, fortnightly social event for both past and present service users. The coffee morning takes place every other Thursday at the Mary Wilkinson Ward. It enables old friends who met on the ward to reunite. The occasion is free of charge and involves coffee, cake and a bingo session, while a buffet lunch is also available.
The Priestley Unit is run by South West Yorkshire Mental Health Trust. The coffee morning gives people currently being cared for on the ward and those who have been discharged something to look forward to. It has been very well received.
Activities co-ordinator Janet Dransfield, whose idea it was to set up the event said, "The coffee morning is an ideal opportunity for people who use, or who have used our services to share their experiences. Not only is it good for past
service users to maintain positive links with the ward, it is also reassuring for current service users to see that people who have left the ward, can and do get better."
Nursing assistant Andrea Heaps who helps out at the event said, "The aim of the coffee morning is to encourage people who use our services to get involved and to help people build and maintain friendships and peer support."
Pauline Kitcher, who has previously spent time on Mary Wilkinson Ward said, "When you live on your own, it’s nice to be able to come out and have conversations with people."
"It’s lovely to see each other!" added Nancy Wardell.
Past patients who are interested in attending the coffee morning are encouraged to speak to mental health NHS staff to find out more.