Month: February 2018

Seminar: Trauma Informed Care by Healthy Living Centre, School of Nursing & Human Sciences, DCU

This is not a Recover College seminar for more information go here.

Trauma informed care is a framework for working with children and youth who are particularly vulnerable. With histories of child abuse and complex trauma, they enter our care systems with troubling behaviours and symptoms, but are not able to articulate their experiences. A trauma informed approach helps to respond more effectively to these children and youth.

Format of the day;


10.30am Welcome
10.45am How trauma impacts on the child and young person – Rosaleen McElvaney, Dublin City University
11.30am Understanding and supporting children and young people in care who present with behaviours that challenge – David Williams, Dublin Institute of Technology
12.15pm Tea/coffee break
12.45pm Trauma Informed Care for children’s services: Ready or not here it Is – Ramona Alaggia, University of Toronto
1.30pm Panel discussion
2pm Finish

Mental Health Europe launches new video on Article 19 of the UN Convention on Rights of People with Disabilities on Independent Living

Article 19 recognises that every person with a disability, including people with a psychosocial disability, has the right to live independently and be included in the community.

What is the UN CRPD? What is Article 19 about? What is an institution? What does independent living mean for people?

Find out more and watch video! 

Thoughts Feelings and Actions course students learning techniques that are in just published research


“Creativity can be a component to heal people.”John Connors

‘I thought there was no way out. Creativity saved my life’- Inspirational speech by actor and activist John Connors

Watch here.

Does Trialogue do what it says on the tin?

Does Trialogue do what it says on the tin?

Article by Ger Brady

When I heard about Trialogue, a community forum of open dialogue around mental health issues, I was sold on the concept. A Trialogue group is comprised of a triumvirate of mental health service users, service providers and family members. It is non-hierarchal, where everyone’s lived experience is equally valued and is an opportunity to open up the conversation on mental health from different perspectives.

A 2017 Report to the United Nation Human Rights Council called for a need to empower individuals and to ensure representative and meaningful participation in health service development and provision, and cited Trialogues as a vehicle for this. With all this is mind, I jumped at the opportunity to be involved in a taster session of Trialogue facilitated by the Recovery College at the Winter Well Being Day, which was held in Dundalk in January. The topic was ‘Normal is an Illusion’ and it generated an enlightening conversation among 48 people, from many different perspectives.

It is important to note at this stage that Trialogue is not a group therapy session, it is a sharing of experience and knowledge and an incredible opportunity to voice the ‘dirty secret’ of mental health difficulties and issues in a non-judgemental arena.

Armed with this information, I was eager to attend the first Trialogue session of 2018 in the Recovery College, which takes place on the first Monday of every month. Twelve people gathered and the topic was ‘New Awakenings’. The ground rules were gone through, which established that everyone could ‘leave their hat at the door’ and not feel constrained to be able to speak their mind freely. Another ground rule is that participants should ensure that they feel personally safe and comfortable, all good so far. However, what ensued was the recounting of some deeply personal and traumatic experiences. To reiterate, this is not a form of group therapy with ‘fixers’ on hand to provide answers, but what became apparent very quickly was that if the proper balance of service users, service providers and family members is not there, the situation can feel a long way from safe. Absolutely open up the conversation on your personal struggles, as the accepted norm is to try and shut that up, that’s healthy, but I don’t feel that the Trialogue space is appropriate for a personal venting session. I cannot say that it was badly facilitated and there were stories of resilience and tools for reawakening, but I felt myself affected by the stories. I was aware that while I am very fortunate to have supports in place, many around the room have not been afforded that luxury. I felt myself very conflicted. While one part of me wanted just to see the proposed benefits of Trialogue, the more critical side of me was aware of the safety issue of people offloading very traumatic experiences in a group.

For Trialogue to work there has to be the right mix of that triumvirate I spoke of. If this is being hailed as the way forward in mental health recovery, there needs to be serious and sustained buy in from service providers to gain balance in the room. Facilitation is also key to  avoid the group getting stuck in one narrative and running the risk of becoming an echo chamber. With these checks in place, I have no doubt that the challenges faced can be overcome and Trialogue can do exactly what it says on the tin.


Hello from Nicole who is on placement with the Recovery College.

Hi, my name is Nicole Kelly and I am working with the Recovery College as part of my third year psychology placement. Working with the recovery college is a great opportunity as it allows me to see first hand how a more holistic approach can be used in order to encourage positive mental health and well-being. During my time at the Recovery College I hope to expand my awareness around mental health by working alongside the Recovery College team and meeting the students, as well as gaining insight into the courses offered by the college and the benefits they offer.
All the best,

EOLAS Project: Project Lead (Part-Time)



This is not a Dublin North, North East Recovery College post. 

The EOLAS Project is a mental health information and learning programme for service users  and their families. EOLAS is unique as it uses a co-facilitated model working collaboratively in the delivery of its programmes. People with self-experience, family members and clinicians work together to provide information and promote recovery.

The EOLAS Project Lead working alongside a Service User Project Worker, will be employed and line managed by Kildare Youth Services, and will report in to the EOLAS Steering Committee. This is a 4-day per week role (30 hours). The post will be based in Dublin with significant travel across the country involved.

Your application (CV and Cover Letter of Suitability) should clearly demonstrate that you have the following background, qualifications and experience:

To be a graduate in a mental health/allied discipline, with at least 5 years’ experience in clinical practice in mental health services
To be able to demonstrate a commitment to recovery principles
To have experience in training and/or group facilitation
To have a high level of administration and IT skills
To have excellent team working, communication and negotiation skills
To have significant experience of report writing and outcome based evaluation
To have line management/supervisory experience
Own transport and clean driving licence.


To be familiar with the ethos and practice of the EOLAS Programmes
To have some experience of working collaboratively with service users or family peers
To have experience in project work and/or management
To be familiar with management structures within mental health services in the HSE

The successful candidate will be employed by Kildare Youth Services on a 12 month fixed-term contract, including a 6 month probationary period, with the possibility of renewal. The salary will be at HSE Grade V level. Secondment will be considered at this salary. The post will be open to staff who have retired from clinical practice. Closing date for applications is 5pm on Wednesday 7th March 2018. Interviews are scheduled before the end of March, 2018.

For job description and further information contact Kildare Youth Services on or at 087 6658221.

Please send CV and Cover Letter of Suitability (700 word max.) electronically to: Fran Bissett, Programme Manager at CVs must contain details of three referees (including your current or most recent employer, who will only be contacted if you are the successful candidate).

Emotional Support Peacock also know as Dexter

So we saw this story and thought we would like to share and many things can support good mental health, we liked the link with the peacock and that now  Dexter has his own Instagram page.

A US airline is clipping the wings of “emotional support animals” hoping to take flight with their owners over safety concerns, as a would-be peacock passenger created a social media tizzy. Dexter will have to travel by car to his destination this time, or use his own wings.

Community Organisation Management Course – February 2018

This is not a Dublin North, North East Recovery College course but we wanted to let you know about it as one of the way in which we work is using community development principles so it might be a nice way to learn about community development in the community.  For more information please contact Joanna or Lynda.

The course provides an insight into the theory and practice of management and leadership in community organisations with a strong focus on developing leadership capacity.
The programme is specifically designed to support those currently employed or volunteering within the community sector and who are giving consideration to progressing to managerial roles, board memberships in the sector, or to further and higher education in this area.

Topics include:
  • Community development theory
  • Analysis of the community and voluntary sector and policy context
  • Leadership and management theories
  • Leadership in the community
  • Organisational theory
  • Developing organisational vision and mission
  • Organisational structures and processes
  • Financial management Governance in community and voluntary sector
  • Expert guest speakers and site visits

Start: 13th February 2018, Tuesday
Dates & times: Tuesdays, 10.00 – 15.00 (one day per week)
Duration: 12 weeks
Venue: DCU in the Community, Shangan Road, Ballymun
Course Fee: €200 (the fee includes certification and all course materials)
Applications: Application form and a short interview

Deadline for Applications:  9th Febrary 2018


Joanna Ozarowska, DCU in the Community, 01 700 8851
Lynda Ward, Sillogue Neighbourhood Centre, 01 563 5253,