The Maudsley Charity, which supports the work of South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London, is funding new community-led projects in Croydon, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark, through its 2021 Community and Connection grant scheme.
The grants have been awarded to a diverse range of projects, many of which include the use of sport or the creative arts to promote physical and mental wellbeing.
The funding will enable projects to make a positive contribution to the lives of people experiencing or recovering from severe mental illness, and benefit people who face additional social or economic disadvantage.
The Maudsley Charity is the largest NHS mental health charity in the UK, and exists to support patients, carers, clinical teams and scientists working towards improving mental health.
Maudsley Charity funding goes above and beyond core NHS funding to provide additional or enhanced services.
Speaking about the funding Alice Casey, Director of Programmes at Maudsley Charity said:
“We are delighted to be funding these projects which have been selected through a highly competitive process. At the heart of our decision making was the need to ensure the projects reflect our diverse local communities, so equality and inclusion were essential factors in our deliberations. We involved a range of people in selecting projects for funding; including those with lived experience of mental illness, clinicians and academic experts. We believe that this diversity of experience helps us make better decisions.
“This year we are proud to be able to support a wide range of projects working both in hospital and in the community to assist those experiencing serious mental illness. Sports and arts are well represented and we know people really benefit from these types of activities, as well as some of the more traditional therapeutic approaches. The funded projects are listed below along with the organisation delivering them and the boroughs in which they will be delivered."
Usemi - Lambeth & Southwark Mind (Lambeth and Southwark)
Maudsley Charity funding will enable this service to meet the specific needs of people whose experience of severe and enduring mental illness is impacted by race, ethnicity, and culture.
Usemi will offer culturally sensitive and anti-racist support to ethnically diverse communities and respond to local need, by developing innovative and destigmatising approaches in the treatment of psychosis and racial trauma in the community.
Sports Fans Café and Sporting Recovery Partnership - South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (Lewisham)
South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) is partnering with previous Maudsley Charity grantee, Sporting Recovery, to maximise opportunities for their mental health service users to access sport exercise and physical wellbeing activities.
A Sports Fans Café is also being jointly developed with Millwall, Community Connections and SLaM Health Champions. It will support vulnerable patients in making meaningful changes not only to their lifestyle, but their sense of belonging and inclusion.
Southwark Youth Troupe - Theatre Troupe CIC (Southwark)
A theatre arts project for young people who experience acute, severe, and complex mental distress because of trauma. The project provides a chance to take part in all aspects of the theatre as part of an artistic team. Each person works with a one-to-one mentor, helping them to calm and manage their emotions, and gain confidence and self-esteem.
Maudsley Charity funding will enable participants to experience the joy of making and producing with others and gain skills which they can then take and apply in daily lives.
Raw Recovery and Progression – Raw Material Music & Media Education Limited (Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark)
A previous Maudsley Charity grantee, Raw Material will work in a new partnership with South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust’s Recovery College, offering a 13-month programme targeting young people 16+ and adults of all ages experiencing severe mental ill health, many of whom have been particularly adversely affected by the impact of the pandemic and the isolation of lockdown. Raw Recovery and Progression will offer creative wellbeing opportunities for participants to build confidence and express themselves through freewriting and music creation.
Football Beyond Borders (Croydon, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark)
Football Beyond Borders aspires for a world in which every young person has a trusted, empathetic adult relationship by their side throughout their adolescence.
Maudsley Charity funding will support young people suffering with mental health problems who are reluctant to engage in therapeutic interventions, or unable to access them. A client-led approach brings together clinically evidenced solutions, delivered by culturally competent practitioners providing expert mental health support in a flexible, accessible and non-stigmatising way. The project aims to help overcome the deep distrust that many young people feel towards agencies that provide mental health support.
South London Drop-in Drama - Outside Edge Theatre Company
(Croydon, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark)
This unique arts-based intervention supports the recovery of people affected by addiction and serious mental illness.
Maudsley Charity funding will enable the delivery of co-designed interventions and treatments with service users. The programme’s facilitators have lived experience of addiction and mental illness, and they will train existing service users as peer facilitators.
Creative communities: peer-designed digital comics - South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (Lambeth and Southwark)
There remain serious mental health issues for young people which are difficult to discuss and prevent. Maudsley Charity funding will help produce communications materials to engage, understand and support young people at risk of mental ill health in the community and signpost towards specialist interventions where needed.
Working with award-winning social issue comics producers, PositiveNegatives, the project will create accessible digital materials, initially in form of an online comic/zine that explores youth experiences of self-harm, recovery stories, positive coping skills and contact details for support services. Using a co-design model, the developing team will include young people, clinical psychologists and graphic designers.
Loophole Music - Good Vibrations - (Inpatients at Bethlem Royal Hospital – all boroughs)
Loophole Music has been supporting patients at Bethlem Royal Hospital since 2012. The project has previously benefitted from Maudsley Charity funding and is based around music technology, encouraging a range of skills including song writing, improvisation, production, recording and promotion.
One-to-one and small group sessions are offered, in a stimulating and safe space, encouraging participants to become confident in their ideas, take creative risks and find self-expression. Participants can develop skills to professionally record and promote their own music and benefit from longer term community connections programme following hospital discharge.
Hospital In-reach - Mosaic Clubhouse (Lambeth)
Over the course of a year Mosaic Clubhouse will regularly attend wards at Lambeth Hospital to engage with patients, identifying their strengths and aspirations and helping them explore community services available to them.
By increasing the opportunities to form connections with people, engage with voluntary community sector organisations, or learn new life skills; discharged inpatients will be better placed to make use of the community support available to them.
We Stand Together - Croydon Voluntary Action (Croydon)
Croydon Voluntary Action will work with community partners and those with lived experience of mental illness to deliver a sport and physical activity programme to engage refugees, asylum seekers and homeless people with poor mental health.
The activities will offer a structured programme, delivered by qualified coaches with wrap around services that offer additional support, particularly for those with undiagnosed mental ill health.