New community outreach service in Adur

September 2022

West Sussex Mind is reaching out to people in the most income-deprived wards of the Adur district, who may be struggling with their mental health but are reluctant to ask for help

As part of our communities and inclusion work, we have launched a project in five Adur wards to help people improve their mental well-being and get support with their wider social needs, such as finances, physical health, housing and employment.

The community outreach project covers five of the most income-deprived wards in the Adur district – Churchill, Peverell, St Mary’s, Mash Barn, and Eastbrook – and aims to identify and support individuals who may be reluctant to ask for mental health support, due to stigma, social/financial exclusion, poor physical health or other reasons. We will also support people to access help from other services for these wider issues, which we know often affect mental well-being.

We are partnering with community organisations across Adur, such as food banks, churches, advice organisations and leisure centres, to identify and reach those who may need our help. We will also be offering free mental health training to staff and volunteers in local organisations and community groups to increase knowledge and reduce the stigma around accessing mental health support.

Our community outreach workers for Adur, Alison, standing outside our Southwick support hub

Alison, our community outreach worker for Adur, can offer one-to-one appointments to help people with their mental health and advise on wider issues, such as finances, employment, housing and physical health


“We are pleased to be able to offer this new service, particularly at a time when many people are struggling with the cost of living, which in turn impacts their mental health,” says Alison, peer mental health community outreach worker for Adur. “The reasons people feel excluded from accessing mental health and other support are multiple and complex, so having a proactive presence in these Adur communities will be essential to support people to get the help they need.”

Alison will be recruiting peer volunteers to help people navigate services, help them with practical tasks, such as form filling and making phone calls, and offer ongoing support. Peer volunteers, who have themselves experienced poor mental health, but who are in a place of recovery, have unique insight into how difficult it can be to interact with services and get support if you are feeling mentally unwell.

In the first instance, contact Alison Waite, our peer mental health community outreach worker for Adur, by emailing alison.waite@westsussexmind.org. Note that Alison works Tuesdays
(9-5), Wednesdays (9-1) and Thursdays (9-5).