Building Health Partnerships: Tackling Young Suicide in Bolton
The overarching focus for the Bolton BHP work was to provide better access to children and young people’s mental health support services and to prevent young suicide.
Following a young suicide there was concern as to whether existing services and systems were as effective as they could be. The group had a number of aims they wanted to achieve through their BHP work, namely to:
- Improve awareness of the local ‘offer’ for children and young people that will provide better access to services, and more resilience in the system
- Strategically align commissioning and opportunities for joint/cross-sector approaches to supporting children and young people in Bolton
- Develop a ‘whole system’ approach to mental health through the engagement and involvement of key stakeholders through the process
BHP takes a facilitative approach, working with a cross sector group from the local area. The group in Bolton received a series of facilitated sessions and through them co-designed and led a number of activities, to work towards their aims, these included:
Training in suicide prevention: BHP was the vehicle for launching the national charity PAPYRUS suicide prevention model in Bolton www.papyrus-uk.org.uk. The organisation has been engaged in all events and are co-producing the roll out of the suicide prevention training with a variety of statutory and VCSE organisations (funded by the CCG with Local authority contributing).
A mapping exercise: This was to make sense of the mental health services currently available for young people. Over 50 providers of mental health support were identified and their services collated. All this information is now available in one place, making it much easier for young people, their families, schools and other professionals to access the support they need. It also improves the data from which future decisions will be made about meeting the needs of children and young people locally.
Review of service user pathways: Exploring and improving a range of possible pathways for young people utilising an asset based Bolton approach.
Consultation with young people: Wider consultation with young people on what support should look like from their perspective.
Commitment to partnership: Inviting organisations to pledge their commitment to the Bolton partnership approach to supporting children and young people.
TheBHP work in Bolton opened up an honest conversation between providers, commissioners, service users and potential service users. It has brought about a number of changes in Bolton’s approach to Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) creating a more comprehensive, joined up approach across both the VCSE and public sector. It has:
- Supported theVCSE mental health services to join up their activities into a coherent local offer to present a less fragmented picture of provision, that is clearer for commissioners and service users in and around Bolton
- Broadened the understanding, engagement and cross-sector delivery of the mental health strategy specifically around Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) activity and the dissemination of young people’s suicide prevention support and training through Papyrus
- Supported the Bolton cross-sector partnership to have a common understanding of commissioning language and processes
Bolton continues to develop this approach and will:
Keepexploring and improving a range of possible pathways for young people utilising an asset based Bolton approach.
Continue consulting with young people on what support should look like from their perspective.
Invite organisations to pledge their commitment to the Bolton partnership approach to supporting children and young people.
“Our vision for young people’s mental health in Bolton
Bolton is a place where all services work together in partnership to support and promote children and young people with their positive mental health and so prevent young suicide.
In Bolton, mental health is all of our business.”
Read out our BHP work in South Gloucestershire here.
Bolton is one of six areas that we have worked with in the second phase of the Building Health Partnerships (BHP) Programme funded by NHS England. BHP is jointly delivered by SEUK and the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR). It is designed to support local partners in health and care to focus on the mutual benefit of strong and informed Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Local Authority (LA) engagement with the local Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector – to improve health and care outcomes. Find out more here.