Action Mental Health’s eating disorder service within the Southern Health and Social Care Trust (SHSCT) area has been relaunched, introducing a vital and effective new model of support for people experiencing eating disorders and their families/ carers in partnership with the SHSCT.
The launch event of ‘AMH everyBODY’, formerly known as Adapt, gave gathered audience of local politicians, health service personnel and local school children, an overview of a service which has proven a lifeline for many users and their families.
One service user spoke poignantly of the support she gained through everyBODY when her binge eating disorder and extreme exercise regime began to take over her daily life. She said everBODY taught her mechanisms to cope with her illness.
Action Mental Health’s Deborah McCready, everyBODY Project Worker said: “AMH everyBODY exists to bridge the gap on the clients’ journey from the moment they seek help until they eventually get to speak to a medical expert, as with existing waiting lists this can be a long time. AMH everyBODY offers a recovery approach in sessions when people will receive information and support to develop skills, stay focused and healthy until they see a therapist.”
One service user said: “Speaking out is hard and you get scared that people will judge you, but for the first time I felt like somebody was listening to me and just got it.
“I was able to get support for other underlying issues as well as my eating disorder and it helped having someone to explain how to access different types of support.
AMH everyBODY Manager, Colin Loughran added: “This is a very practical model and one that could be used as a model of best practice throughout Northern Ireland.
“There is a significant shortfall in support services for people experiencing eating disorder and their families, prior to patients being seen by clinicians.
“This new service will fill that gap; giving people access to specially trained staff who will provide the vital support to help people in their recovery.”