Burying Time Capsule

Burying Time Capsule
1859 - 150th Anniversary of Parish - 2009 (photo by Scott & Debbie Travers )

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Room for more With Hope in Mind participants

     This article appeared in the Journal-Pioneer newspaper on March 25, 2013 - http://www.journalpioneer.com/News/Local/2013-03-25/article-3207259/Room-for-more-With-Hope-in-Mind-participants/1
    With Hope in Mind programs underway Alberton facilitators for the Canadian Mental Health Association’s With Hope in Mind program, Janet Mortimer, left, and Jacquie Lidstone, review the outline for the program’s eight sessions. There is room for more participants in the Tuesday program in Summerside and the Wednesday night program in Alberton. The free program is designed for family members of people living with mental illness. Eric McCarthy/Journal Pioneer
     ALBERTON – Family members helping a loved one cope with mental illness should never lose sight of their need for self-care, Janet Mortimer and Jacquie Lidstone stress. They are the Alberton facilitators for With Hope in Mind, a program directed at family members of people living with mental illness.

Programs run one night a week for eight weeks, and different topics are covered each week.
“It’s a family to family educational program with trained facilitators,” explained Les Wagner, CMHA regional director for Prince County.
“The goal of this program is to make people aware that self-care is very important,” Lidstone said.
Family members of a person with mental illness “can have a very positive impact on the kind of life their relative has, if they have these coping skills,” Lidstone explained, “and you can have a very positive impact on your own stress level when you’re involved with the types of communication skills, and just knowing the information, the expectations of someone with a particular illness.”
Mortimer took the program several years ago and described it as a lifeline.“You’re not alone,” Mortimer said. “You’re with other people. You can share your experience without being judged, because everybody knows, more or less, what you’re talking about.
“There’s part of the program that says you didn’t cause the mental illness, you can’t control it and you can’t cure it,” Mortimer said.
Participants gain a better understanding of mental illness and acquire coping skills that enable them to be more help to the person with mental illness and to other family members.
There is also a support group atmosphere to the confidential sessions, Lidstone said, indicating participants share only if they feel comfortable doing so.
The Canadian Mental Health Association currently has two programs underway in Prince County, Tuesdays in Summerside and Wednesdays in Alberton, from 7 to 9 p.m. Anyone interested in joining a program should phone 436-7399 or 853-4180 for details. There is no cost to join.

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