The SUN has given me confidence in myself that I have something to offer and am able to work as part of a team to achieve goals in specific relate to mental illness through the Five Values Project.

This confidence meant I applied and acquired a paid role in a national mental health charity and have now worked there for one year.

Working has been a crucial part of my recovery journey; providing me with meaning and boosting my self-esteem hugely.

Founding member of the 5 Values service user team

From Zero to hopeful….

After my first psychotic episode, I lost control of reality and had a few terrifying and very strange years. After a suicide attempt I was placed on medication and given support by the Cameo team in Peterborough. I lost my independence, my self-esteem, my confidence and my sense of personal safety.

But with the love and support of a great family, a good man and a few good friends I have achieved quite a lot. The Sun Network has been a part of my journey, a stepping stone to where I am now. With a combination of the Cameo team, The Recovery College, voluntary work and the Sun Network, I have now progressed to a much more comfortable place in my life and I have even started some paid employment part time. I am now an administrative assistant for a local business.

I met Anne from the Sun Network, at the Recovery college in one of their workshops and I showed an interest in their organisation. They also showed an interest in me. I was introduced into a world of meetings. I was given the opportunity to sit on an interview panel as well as attend some NHS and other meetings.  Anne supported me through the process and at the meetings, which I don’t believe I would have done on my own. But it helped with my confidence and my self-esteem.

Furthermore, ideas have sprung from attending these meetings. I believe I have been listened to and appreciated by workers in the mental health field and I have even had an idea spring to mind which my father and I will be investigating.

Whilst at an NHS meeting with Anne we discussed a local council who have recognised and implemented a helping hands scheme for people struggling with mental health issues. Dad and I hope to help our community as well to protect the vulnerable people and this could become possible because my dad sits on the local parish council.

The Sun Network has been very inspiring to me and very supportive, they have raised my confidence levels and generated ideas on ways for me to move forward, I have had an input into local health and mental health services and they have helped me to help myself and my local community.