Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here you will find the answers to some common frequently asked questions (FAQs)

What do you mean by recovery?

Recovery can mean different things to different people.  It is not always about recovering from an illness, but more so about recovering a life.  And for some people it is about providing the conditions within which people can grow within and beyond what has happened.

"Recovery is about building a meaningful and satisfying life, as defined by the person themselves, whether or not there are ongoing symptoms or problems" -  Laurie Davidson and colleagues at Devon Partnership NHS Trust

Recovery is using a strength-based approach that does not focus solely on symptoms and which emphasises resilience and control over life’s challenges to help people with mental health problems move forward, set new goals, and take part in relationships and activities that are meaningful.

Recovery is also often referred to as a process, and some of the important features of the recovery process can be described by the acronym “CHIME”, which stands for:

  • Connectedness
  • Hope and Optimism
  • Identity
  • Meaning and Purpose
  • Empowerment

What do you mean by wellbeing?

Wellbeing is ‘how we are doing’ as individuals, it is a way to describe how we feel in ourselves about the things that are affecting how we experience life – quality of life, good physical and mental health, and being part of our communities. It’s about how external conditions affect our lives and how we function in society.

What affects wellbeing is different for everyone. So, no matter how many positive things we have in our lives, if we don’t feel or experience our lives going well, we can’t describe them as truly going well.

What makes a Wellbeing and Recovery College different to other colleges?

A wellbeing and recovery college has a particular focus on creating the right settings and giving people the ability and skills to improve health and wellbeing for themselves or others.

That means raising awareness and understanding of wellbeing and recovery and what it means to each person as well as sharing skills and know-how.

A wellbeing and recovery college offers supportive and encouraging education rather than “therapy”.

What’s the difference between a therapeutic approach and an educational approach?

The college does not offer treatment or co-ordination of care – people are not referred and are free to choose their own course(s) /learning opportunities. People may use the college as an alternative to mental health services, alongside support offered from mental health services or to help them move out of mainstream mental health services.

For a person with lived experience of mental ill health, this may help them to take control and become an expert in their own wellbeing and recovery and move on with their life despite their mental health challenges. This will hopefully help them to achieve or work towards whatever is meaningful in their lives.

Who can access the Wellbeing and Recovery College?

The college is for everyone living in Herefordshire and Worcestershire aged 18 and over with no upper age limit.

You don’t have to be going through mental health challenges yourself, we are here for family members, friends, carers and people who work in related services. 

We are also here for people who are keen to learn more about mental health and wellbeing, or how to keep themselves well and support others. 

Our wellbeing and recovery college is open to all.

How do I sign up for a course?

You can enrol by completing this simple form online.

If you want to speak to us before you do this, please email on: HW_WellbeingRecoveryCollege@comfirst.org.uk us and someone will call you within 3 working days. 

We will then email you your welcome pack explaining exactly what happens next  along with our charter, our guide to making sure everyone feels safe and included, frequently asked questions  and useful contacts.

The next step is that we will connect you to the organisation(s) whose courses you want to attend, they will be sent a copy of your enrolment form and will make contact with you as they will want to take more specific information from you in order to make the course as meaningful as possible. They may do this online, by telephone or a mixture of both.

You will always have our contact details, should you wish to get in touch with us at any point.

Where are the courses delivered?

Initially, because of COVID19, most of the learning opportunities will be delivered online, some will take place from a physical base with all relevant government social distancing guidelines in place.

Looking ahead, we would like to give people the choice of attending online or in person at a number of community bases across Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

Who develops and delivers the courses?

All courses are run by staff from the partnership organisations and are developed and delivered by professionals, many of whom will have lived experience of mental or physical illness, and/or experience of supporting someone with a mental or physical illness.

Some courses may have been co-produced with experts by experience and some courses may have experts by experience co-facilitating the training.

How much do the courses cost?

All of our courses are free unless otherwise stated.

What happens if my course is fully booked?

If you have requested a place on a course/workshop and it is fully booked, we will let you know and, where possible offer you an alternative. Some course providers will keep a waiting list and they will let you know directly when a place becomes available.

What happens if not enough people enrol?

Usually,  we can't run a course if not enough people enrol. We will let you know if this is the case with a course that you have booked on to and, where possible, we will offer you an alternative.

What happens if I register for a course that needs me to meet criteria and I am not eligible?

In some cases, a course or workshop may require you live in a particular area, or to be accessing specific NHS services, if you book a course that is not available to you, we will let you know and where possible, we will offer you a more suitable alternative.

Will I be able to attend if I had difficulties with learning at school?

Yes! Our courses are aimed at a range of people. Some rely on reading and writing more than others. Please contact us to talk about your individual learning needs and to discuss which courses may be most suitable. 

Can somebody attend with me?

It is ok to for somebody to attend with you but we do ask that they also enrol and join in.

What happens after I have attended a course?

We will want to know what you thought about the course, whether it helped you and in what way.

You will receive an email and also maybe a phone call to ask you for your feedback.

This is very important for us to know whether we need to think about making changes to the courses. It is likely that the course provider will also ask for honest feedback from you.