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Catherine presents complex needs since she has fallen victim to mental health illness. She now attends “Challenging Perceptions” - an open, free, friendly & activity based group that meets on Tuesday evenings. 
Due to her illness and with her abilities of social interaction, confidence and skills for arts & crafts depleting, she now hardly fits in with people of her own age.
With being welcomed at “Challenging Perception” she not only spends quality time with young persons of her age range, she also receives one to one support from extremely friendly and accommodating volunteers, which is exactly what she needs given her high dependency & illness. 
This contributes a great deal towards her mental health & well-being. 
Every time she returns with a happy demeanour after the group.

For an otherwise socially isolated young person with mental illness, except for paid day-care services of 4hrs per week only, this group is the only bit of contact she maintains with people of her own age, with similar interests and facing almost same illnesses.

I would like to credit the volunteers for this group and happily recommend this service to anyone because unlike all other activities and groups out there for people effected by mental health issues, this is the only service that is “free of any charge”. Which is extremely commendable considering the depleting social care funding & lack of care in the community.

I also believe this sort of effort should be highly encouraged and funded to ensure all activities of this group are open to everyone who require to access such group, whereas otherwise they might not have “fit-in” within the constraints of boxes for social care assessments or personal prejudice of other people within the activity based groups.

I hope that however small in quantity, Challenging Perception can continue to contribute towards the change in perceptions of mental health and issues surrounding this sensitive but largely common issue, by keeping its welcoming doors open to young persons enduring mental health problems.”

Catherines Parents

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