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Fionas Story
 

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Fiona has been involved in many aspects of our work here at Trauma Healing Together and has both contributed and benefited considerably. She initially engaged with our charity by volunteering to be a member of our Perth and Kinross Mental Health and Wellbeing strategic planning group. This role involved using her lived experience to shape and develop the festival to ensure that it was designed in such a way that it would indeed bring benefit to people struggling with their mental health. 
When asked what Fiona enjoyed most about being involved in the planning of the festival, she said that she ‘enjoyed being able to put ideas across that I have found useful to help with my poor mental health, as they may be helpful for others’. 

It has helped me to try different things that push me out my comfort zone, and the counselling is helping me deal with my different traumas, so it affects my day-to-day life less. It has helped me to be able to deal with my feelings and emotions better, so I am less likely to attempt suicide

Over the weekend, she ran a stall which provided personally designed resources, which could be used to support people to manage their mental health and feel more positive about themselves. As a result of being involved she became ‘more confident around people’ and found that she was to give her ‘opinion regarding different issues more easily’


Following this, Fiona self-referred herself to Pathways to Hope which involves 24 weeks of trauma focused therapy and 16 weeks of group wellbeing sessions. Over the course of the project, she found it incredibly useful and said the following about it:

Fiona recognised we valued her thoughts and opinions while accessing our services:
“They have asked for feedback on any improvements that could be made. They always make you feel involved in the charity.”


On completing her Wellbeing sessions and therapy, she became a Peer Group Facilitator, noting:
“I will hopefully reassure individuals doing the project as I’ve been there. On a personal level I will be learning new skills and it will build my confidence and improve my self-esteem.”
Fiona went on to facilitate a group who benefited from her lived experience and her creative talents.  As Fiona reflects on this experience, she says:


“I enjoy helping others, and also hopefully improve my confidence and self-esteem. It gave me a chance to connect with others, and learn new things. I got a lot out of seeing people in the group develop, become more relaxed and enjoy each others’ company, and interested in the activities that were done.”
To sum up her experience of her involvement with the charity:


“the charity does amazing work to help individuals and everyone is friendly, helpful, understanding and supportive. …. they have helped me a great deal”.
 

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