Special interest groups

We run a number of professional special interest groups for Bradford District and Craven Talking Therapies staff.  The groups of meet regularly and are responsible for supporting and delivering on service and staff development, specific to a particular area of interest.

Perinatal Special Interest Group

The Perinatal Special Interest Group (SIG) is chaired by our Perinatal Lead. The groups focus is on all things relating to expecting a baby or having a child under one. At any one time, there is likely to be multiple projects regarding enhancing the perinatal offer provided within Bradford District and Craven Talking Therapies.

Aims and objectives

The aim of the SIG is to have a group of upskilled practitioners with a special interest, training, and knowledge of perinatal mental health to:

  • Offer assessment and treatment to perinatal clients where possible within the recommended fast track timeframe.
  • Support with upskilling the wider service through supervision, sharing experience and expertise, and delivering training.
  • Ensure the service is working in line with up-to-date guidance, legislation, research and recommendations in regard to perinatal mental health
  • Increase perinatal referrals by reducing stigma and barriers in accessing mental health support in this period and promoting and educating other professionals within the statutory and voluntary sector.
  • Developing care pathways both within the service as well as into and between services.

Some of the recent and current projects are:

  • Staff attended birth trauma and tokophobia training.
  • Reviewing the Perinatal workshops.
  • Presenting an overview of our service in parenting classes across Bradford and Airedale.
  • Improve access through community links.
  • Develop breastfeeding and mental health training.

What do our members say about the SIG?

  • Connecting with other staff members with a similar interest.
  • Attending training and presenting this to the wider team.
  • Being a perinatal champion and supporting our perinatal clients.
  • Improving my knowledge of perinatal issues/concerns.
  • Attending the reflective space (monthly meeting to reflect on our practice and share knowledge and guidance).
  • Sharing thoughts and ideas for service development.

Racially, Ethnically and Culturally Diverse Communities Special Interest Group (SIG)

This SIG is chaired by our BAME Lead. Special interest leads in IAPT aim to ensure hard to reach groups are best supported and have access to psychological therapy. We know that mental health does not discriminate when it comes to race and although there are a variety of ethnic groups benefitting from the support we offer, we are looking to increase the number of people from BAME groups accessing our service.

Aims and objectives

The overall aims and objectives of the SIG are to have a group of upskilled clinicians with a special interest, training, and knowledge of BAME mental health in order to:

  • Support service development, including research and development activities for BAME clients.
  • Contribute to the development of BAME mental health care within IAPT and proposals for future offer that responds to the NHS Long Term Plan which will result in increased identification of BAME client’s mental health needs and community needs.
  • To contribute to the improvement of pathways for the BAME client group.
  • Support engagement with communities and service users to inform service development. 

LGBTQ+ Pride Special Interest Group

LGBTQ+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (or questioning) + more.  A person’s sexuality and gender influences many aspects of their lives, including their experiences and their mental health. The LGBTQIA+ community is more likely to experience anxiety and depression, yet are less likely to access IAPT or benefit when they do (except in services which have purposely set out to make improvements).

Our Special Interest Group is passionate about LGBTQIA+ mental health, and aims to be upskilled in this area to support the service development of working with the client group, improve colleague experiences, and make a difference.

We have many projects underway, including:

  • Reviewing staff survey on experiences and development needs.
  • Working on the referral process to make it more inclusive and welcoming for the community.
  • Outreach with local LGBTQIA+ services to build better relationships and appropriate pathways for clients.
  • Co-development of LGBTQIA+ mental health workshops with external services, held in spaces they already feel safe.
  • Development of training for staff in LGBTQIA+ awareness and mental health, and specific training on mental health and consideration and adaptations for therapy.

What do our members say about the SIG?

  • Adds more value to my working week.
  • Being part of a positive change for LGBTQIA+ clients.
  • The possibilities of networking with other services.
  • Building relationships with members of the wider team.
  • Feeling less isolated.
  • Gaining new knowledge and understanding.
  • Choice to focus on what we are passionate about.

 Wellbeing Supporters Special Interest Group

Wellbeing is a complex combination of a person’s physical, mental, emotional and social health factors – which are all strongly linked to happiness and life satisfaction. As individuals working in mental health, it is essential that we work to look after our own and each other’s wellbeing. We understand and champion this as a service.

Aims and objectives

The Wellbeing Supporters Group focusses on working out where we, as a service, can better support the needs of our staff using the voice of our staff.  This includes working on many projects such as:

  • The annual staff wellbeing survey.
  • Our staff wellbeing pack.
  • Planning new staff wellbeing initiatives.
  • Organising and facilitating our staff wellbeing away days.
  • Attending and delivering wellbeing related training.
  • Creating resources and space for wellbeing promotions and conversations.