What does DUCIE do?

The DUCIE network aims to:

  • provide support, and help meet the needs for continuing professional development, of involvement workers employed in HEIs
  • share and disseminate good practice and examples of existing posts and initiatives
  • provide opportunities for debate and the teasing out of complex areas of practice
  • develop good practice guidelines on the involvement of users and carers in learning and teaching in higher education (building on work begun with the Learning from Experience guide),  the establishment of involvement worker posts, and development of a context in which they can flourish.
  • act as a central point of contact for national initiatives, such as the Mental Health in Higher Education project, seeking to engage with users and carers involved in learning and teaching in Higher Education
  • act as a campaigning and pressure group

Activities:

  • DUCIE guidelines for the employment of service user and carer involvement workers in higher education.
  • Ian Light Award for work in pairs
  • DUCIE jiscmail discussion list (with 60+ members)

See here for

Background to the network:

See also this longer extract from a recent book

In the summer of 2005, a small band of user and carer involvement development workers, based in Higher Education Institutions, met over two days in Nottingham.   They had in common that they were fairly newly appointed to posts with the aim of facilitating user and carer involvement in education for health and social care.   Lively discussion was accompanied by a shared sense of optimism and enjoyment in the possibilities of these new roles.  They were seen to pose significant challenges too.

Some of the issues related to the cross-cutting nature of the work.  Workers made reference to the need to ‘juggle too many balls' or ‘spin too many plates at once'.  They spoke of ‘wearing lots of different hats' and the complexity of ‘working with different voices'.  There was a real sense of people being pulled in a number of different and sometimes opposing directions; a set of challenges which will be familiar to anyone who might be considered a ‘boundary spanner' (Williams 2002). 

Other key issues were around hidden agendas, lack of clarity in what is expected of the role and tokenism; with one worker describing ‘being parachuted in to rubber stamp things'.   For some the role felt unstable, reflecting temporary or part-time contracts and ‘inadequate resources'.  One worker felt they were precariously ‘standing on tip-toes'; another in a state where they felt they were ‘about to be rained on'. Most could identify with the ambient fear of getting things wrong.

Two statements from the meeting stand out for me. When asked to describe a picture they had drawn of themselves in role, one person said "I'm trying to push the main door open when it seems that service users and carers are only allowed in through a little door that is open at the side!'. Whatever progress may already have been made in involving service users and carers in education and engaging with communities, ‘pushing the main door open' can be a major task. The second image relates to tensions involved in work that breaks new ground. "It's a challenge" one worker said "not being a this or a that"; with colleagues always seeming able to assert much clearer, established and accepted role identities.

   

Supported by the Mental Health in Higher Education (mhhe) project, but with a remit that goes beyond mental health, the DUCIE network meets two to three times a year and has proved a means for the sharing of expertise and experience between those employed in development worker roles. 

 

Blog Posts

Integrating mental health and social care - does it work in practice?

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 24, 2018 at 10:55 0 Comments

In the second of the Centre for Mental Health’s series We need to talk about social care, Kim Woodbridge-Dodd looks at the integration of mental health and social care,  the benefits behind this and the challenges faced on the ground.

Find out more.…

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#socialcarefuture

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 24, 2018 at 10:50 0 Comments



#socialcarefuture is an initiative – voluntarily organised – which aims to bring about major positive change in what is currently called “social care”. Those involved will be citizens, people using public services and their families, workers and professionals, managers and politicians. #socialcarefuture is being steered by an informal group and is open to involvement from others wanting to offer ideas, skills and…

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Beyond Closed Doors:

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 22, 2018 at 13:30 0 Comments

An exploration of UK alternatives to psychiatric hospitalisation for people in Mental Health Crisis. Filmed in 2002 by Bryony Rogers. 

View the film…

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A new vision for mental health

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 21, 2018 at 15:55 0 Comments

‘Have you ever wondered what mental healthcare would look like if, knowing what we know today, it could be redesigned from scratch? A New Vision for Mental Health is an innovative website that seeks to answer this question by taking a critical, informed and constructive look at the current mental health system. It explores ideas, insights and suggestions – from a wide range of individuals and organisations – that might, in time, lay the foundations for a new and quite different approach to…

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Maintaining momentum: driving improvements in mental health care - new report

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 21, 2018 at 15:54 0 Comments

'Maintaining momentum' highlights failings in specialist mental health services in England, and the devastating toll this takes on patients and their families. 

The report's findings provide fresh impetus to deliver on the recommendations set out in the NHS Five Year Forward View for Mental Health.

Download here…

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Russel Razzaque talk on breakdown and spirituality

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 19, 2018 at 12:40 0 Comments

Dr. Russell Razzaque is a London-based psychiatrist with sixteen years’ experience in adult mental health. He is the author of Breaking Down is Waking Up. He has worked for a number of national and international organisations during his career including the University of Cambridge, the UK Home Office and the Ministry of Justice. He currently works in acute mental health services in the NHS in East London. He is also a published author in human psychology with several books on the subject and…

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Contribute to Asylum magazine

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 19, 2018 at 12:33 0 Comments

The latest issue of Asylum magazine is out now.

There are a number of ways in which you can contribute to Asylum:

  • Subscribe to Asylum – print and digital versions of the magazine are available.
  • Order bulk copies and distribute them.
  • Set up or join a local…
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Health Inequalities Manifesto 2018

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 19, 2018 at 12:26 0 Comments

People living in the least deprived areas of England live around 20 years longer in good physical and mental health than people in the most deprived areas.

Tackling and reducing health inequalities means giving everyone the same opportunities to lead a mentally and physically healthy life, no matter where they live and who they are.

Certain population subgroups are at higher risk of mental health problems because of greater exposure and vulnerability to…

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With children in mind: call for papers

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 19, 2018 at 12:20 0 Comments

This issue of the Journal of Public Mental Health will, specifically, cover the promotion of mental health and emotional wellbeing and the prevention of mental ill health and crises in children and young people. Manuscripts are sought that discuss the role of parents, carers, teachers and health care staff in the promotion of good mental health, including resilience and wellbeing.…

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Projects of the Self A Being-Human funded research project into resilience, grit, and self-efficacy narratives in Higher Education

Posted by Jill Anderson on March 17, 2018 at 20:38 0 Comments

This project was set up as a result of concern with the growing neoliberalisation of higher education, and to explore the widespread adoption of approaches informed by notions such as grit, resilience, and the Growth Mindset.

Find out more.

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