For carers living in Melbourne, the MIND Recovery College carer workshops have started again. The workshops are run by carers, for carers.
The are three workshops "Building Carer Resilience", "Challenging Behaviours", and "Recovery and Hope" each starting at 10.00 on a Saturday morning and running for about 3 hours. The workshops include tea/coffee and lunch and are free of charge. You are welcome to attend one workshop, or all three.
Locations are Hawthorn, Bundoora and Cheltenham and the next session will be Saturday 31 January "Building Carer Resilience" in Hawthorn.
Carers can request session times and make bookings through the MIND carer helpline on 1300 550 265.
Two new workshops called "Getting off the Rollercoaster" and " A Family Affair" will be introduced this year. The next session of "Getting off the Rollercoaster" will run on Tuesday 27 January from 6pm to 8pm in Hawthorn. You can book through the MIND carer helpline.
I have attended the workshops and found them really helpful, as well as a great way to meet other carers.
I found being able to sit with a group of carers in a "safe" environment really comforting. Being able to share with other carers took a great weight off my shoulders.
I learned some new communication skills, and new ideas around setting boundaries with my loved one. I have also looked at my own attitudes, and have become more accepting that there are lots of things I can't change, but I can change the way I think about them.
Very importantly, I learned it was imperative to look after myself - not only basic self care - but to be able to ask for "down time" for myself.
Lastly, I learned that its not only our loved ones who recover from mental illness, carers and family need to nurture their own recovery.
I have been a carer for quite a few years and wish I had been able to take part in these courses earlier in my caring journey. Most of us are "thrown in" to our caring roles with little knowledge and no preparation so its nice to have a bit of help.
If you need urgent assistance, see Need help now For mental health information, guidance and referrals, see the SANE Help Centre SANE Forums is published by SANE Australia with funding from the Australian Government Department of Health SANE Australia ABN 92006533606 PO Box 226 South Melbourne 3205 Australia