“I get to tell my story in my own words” – Member of Think Ahead’s Service User and Carer Reference Group writes for PosAbility magazine
Caroline Butterwick, a writer and member of Think Ahead’s Service User and Carer Reference Group (SUCRG), has written an article for PosAbility magazine about how she uses her lived experience of mental ill-health and visual impairment to make a positive difference in the world – and how others can do the same.
As Caroline says, it gives you the chance to take ownership of your narrative: “I get to tell my story in my own words in a life that has at times been greatly controlled by others.”
Caroline first began using her lived experience to campaign for change as a student and is encouraging others to do the same. She explains that not only does it help develop confidence, team working skills, and public speaking, but, crucially: “Our voices should be key to developing and delivering services that support us.”
Read the full article on PosAbility’s website.
As a member of Think Ahead’s Service User and Carer Reference Group, she actively supports us with the development and delivery of teaching for our trainee social workers.
In her article, Caroline writes: “One of my highlights of working with SUCRG was contributing to teaching at Think Ahead’s Summer Institute… It was great to share my experience of what makes a good social worker, as well as highlighting some of the negative sides of my experience as a service user and what needs to be better. We all carry our own stories and perspectives, and feedback from participants highlights how much they value hearing these.”
Update 6 July 2021: Caroline has since written another article on her experience of service user involvement for the Wellcome Collection. It also features an interview with the Chair of our Service User and Carer Reference Group, Oliver Wood. Read it here.
Find out more about our Service User and Carer Reference Group.
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