Wokingham Borough Council’s new mental health recovery college

Wokingham Borough Council has launched its Recovery College, a new mental health service which gives local people the chance to access workshops and training sessions, designed to help them on their road to recovery.   

The Recovery College provides a range of online educational courses and resources, enabling residents to gain a greater ability to manage their own lives, form stronger social relationships and enhance the skills they need for living and working. The project is a real shift in the delivery of mental health services, from a focus on reducing symptoms to an empowering ethos of rebuilding lives. 

With cognitive health difficulties on the rise, additional help outside of clinical care is necessary. Unlike traditional services which have processes and restrictions on who can access their support, the Recovery College is open to anyone over 18 living in the borough, wishing to improve their wellbeing. Individuals can register themselves without needing any referrals. 

The provision is fluid and responds to the ever evolving needs of its students. Courses include managing anxiety, managing mood, money matters and healthy sleeping habits and are shaped on user’s feedback. Staff are not clinically trained, but are informed by personal experience and their own research of psycho-education.  

“This year in particular caused many of us to feel unsettled, worried and anxious,” said Cllr Charles Margetts, executive member for health, wellbeing and adult services. “Maintaining good mental health and wellbeing has always been important, and more so amid a pandemic. I’m so proud of our officers at Wokingham Borough Council and Public Health colleagues for their commitment and creativity, coming up with ways to enrich and streamline our service offer, breaking barriers and reaching out to everybody. The Recovery College has been a great success in many areas of the country and I’m thrilled to be able to celebrate its launch in our borough too.”  

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