More local people are seeking support from a local mental health organisation, according to latest figures.
Compass Recovery College said 426 new people used its service in 2021-2022, up from 278 the year before. The 26-35 age group used the free service the most and more women than men sought support.
The main benefits described by people after attending workshops or social groups, were:
- learning new skills and techniques
- feeling connected to others
- gaining greater self-awareness.
- Compass arranged art, creative writing and yoga workshops for 39 refugees and asylum seekers placed in Reading hotels by the Home Office. This helped to encourage more women to leave their hotel rooms and socialise, when they had previously only come out at mealtimes.
- A man with autism who had been non-verbal and spent time in Prospect Park Hospital, gained enough confidence from attending workshops, that he returned to education to complete his English and Maths GCSEs and then find work.
- An ethnic minority woman coming out of an abusive relationship, attended mental health and money matters workshops, which helped her gain confidence to live independently.
The council-funded college has been offering free, educational workshops and social groups to people affected directly, or indirectly, by mental health and wellbeing challenges, since 2016.
Details of Compass Recovery College’s work are being presented to the Reading Health and Wellbeing Board on 15 July.