From April 2017 all of our support, information, training and resources are available to emergency service staff and volunteers across both England and Wales to access.
In our third and fourth years we will continue to work in partnership with the emergency services to make the programme truly sustainable from 2019 onwards and to embed lasting change in this sector. Our goals are to:
- Build a sustainable legacy
- Harness and sustain local relationships
- Roll out the Blue Light Programme to Wales
- Empower leadership.
In year three we will do this by:
- training further Blue Light Champions to become peer supporters
- supporting emergency services to recruit, train and support their own Blue Light Champions
- developing a blueprint of the Blue Light Programme to support the development of local Blue Light Mental Health Networks
- planning how we embed our support, training and information into Mind’s core business from April 2019 onwards; and
- working together closely with local Minds to develop sustainable local networks and deliver lasting mental health support to 999 services across England and Wales.
In year three we will also:
- develop several new areas of work with 999 call-handlers, accident and emergency workers and emergency service new recruits; these will be delivered through pilot schemes carried out in certain areas only by our local Minds; and
- carry out research on how the Blue Light Programme can potentially impact on the way emergency service employees and volunteers interact with members of the public.
In year four we’ll:
- continue to work together with emergency services and local Minds to address the different causes of poor mental health for emergency service workers
- provide online resources on PTSD, trauma and coping with traumatic events
- make independent therapeutic and emotional support available through our local Minds where demand is high
- give training to Blue Light Champions and Peer Supporters so they can support colleagues better after traumatic events
- provide additional training to upskill our Blue Light Infoline advisors, with a focus on increasing their knowledge of trauma related mental health problems
- give free workshops on trauma for search and rescue volunteers.
Our ongoing support for emergency services will ensure they promote good mental health across their workforce. When traumatic events do occur, this will help people to feel well-prepared and know where to go if they need additional support.