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Mental health crisis café plan receives funding boost

Exciting plans to develop a mental health crisis café in Chester have received a funding boost of more than £300,000.

The proposal, part of a wider re-design aimed at enhancing crisis care in West Cheshire, will give people better access to assessment and support in their time of need.

NHS West Cheshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, West Cheshire Mental Health Forum and Chester Plus will be working alongside other groups to co-design plans for the café.

It is anticipated that the crisis café could open as soon as August 2019.

NHS West Cheshire Clinical Commissioning Group’s Director of Commissioning, Laura Marsh (pictured), said: “It is vitally important that people who experience a mental health crisis or feel they are about to are able to access assessment and support as soon as possible – in a place that is welcoming, accessible and best-placed to offer the right support.

“West Cheshire’s crisis café will include a home treatment assessment area which will be staffed by professional mental health workers who can help people in crisis find a path to recovery and reduce the need to visit A&E.”

Crisis cafés offer a drop-in service for people when they need urgent mental health support. In West Cheshire, it is anticipated that specially-trained peer support workers will operate alongside an enhanced Crisis Resolution Home Treatment Team.

The service, supported by a £306,000 Beyond Places of Safety government grant, will be provided around the clock to help prevent mental health crises from getting worse.

Suzanne Edwards, Cheshire and Wirral Partnership’s associate director of operations, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been awarded this grant, along with our local partners. This is a great opportunity to improve our already excellent services that we provide to local people. It is vitally important that people experiencing a mental health crisis have the support they need readily available.

“We also recognise the need to ensure that people are seen in the most appropriate setting possible, relevant to their needs. I look forward to working with our local partners to ensure that this project is carried out successfully to the benefit of those accessing the service.”