Kev quickly benefitted from the NHS Wales Change Step programme – becoming a volunteer, and later a peer mentor himself: “I had to go through that therapy myself and had to shoulder all of those thoughts and feelings but this new partnership will help people during that transition. It comes back to that trust and that camaraderie.
“There will be someone there who has been through similar things, who you can trust in, and who can help you to deal with things or help you to get things off your chest while you are going through that therapy.”
Change Step director Geraint Jones said: “The partnership between the Change Step peer mentors and Veterans NHS Wales therapists provides a more seamless route for veterans seeking help for mental health problems and PTSD.
“It also ensures veterans are supported by peers who understand the benefits of engagement, especially whilst waiting for treatment or therapy. This collaboration also highlights the benefits of statutory and third sector organisations working to the same aim and utilising their resources to provide a more joined up approach to veterans requiring support.”
Dr Alan Barrett, Consultant Clinical Lead at Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust added: “Funding additional clinical posts will boost our services ability to deliver evidenced psychological therapies in a timely manner, to military veterans, who need it most, across greater Manchester and Lancashire.