We are excited to announce that we have received funding to provide a new Perinatal service in Bradford.

The My Plan Perinatal Service is funded with a grant from NHS Charities Together, the national charity partner of the NHS.

The service will support Women in Bradford who are suffering with perinatal mental health issues as a result of a recent pregnancy or in the postpartum year or as a result of pre-existing conditions that could relapse in a forthcoming pregnancy.

The project will provide specialist mental health outreach support to marginalised women living in Bradford experiencing low to moderate perinatal mental health issues, focusing on improving wellbeing and mental health. Touchstone specialist support will complement the brilliant emotional support already offered by peer volunteer services across the city including Bradford Homestart and Better Start Perinatal Services.  The aim is to provide appropriate, timely  support to enable women to manage their own mental health and wellbeing, preventing escalation to higher level need in the future, therefore decreasing demand/relieving pressure on  crisis support and the specialist mother and baby mental health service in Bradford.

Touchstone will also work with Get Outdoor More to deliver outdoor group activities with a focus on connecting with other mothers, the local area and enjoying the benefits of nature.

The project will build upon the specialist mental health support Touchstone are delivering with the Stronger Families Project, in Bradford, which supports families to overcome barriers preventing access to education, training, employment and skills building and with the work being undertaken by Clare Powell as part of the West Yorkshire Perinatal Mental Health Peer Support Alliance.

Katie Hammond will be managing the project and recruitment is under way for two part time Perinatal Mental Health Workers.  They will be based at the Carlisle Centre in Bradford.  If you know any individuals or organisations that would benefit from being involved in the project, please contact Katie at katieh@touchstonesupport.org

My Plan aims for individuals:

  • Improved Mental Wellbeing of the women involved. 70 women to be involved in the service
  • Improved Mental Wellbeing of partners and offspring
  • Improved Mental Wellbeing of volunteers/peer supporters in partner services
  • Increased information/advice/signposted into Mental Health and other services.
  • Decreased stigma around mental health
  • Increased awareness of available mental health support
  • Increased take up of Covid vaccine
  • Reduced isolation and increased access to peer support
  • Increased onward referral/ support to other services

My Plan system aims:

  • New pathways into Perinatal Mental Health services and their sustainability, including peer support
  • Lessons learnt, including how to connect people furthest from the system as a model longer term
  • Findings that improve system equalities
  • Wider learning for Statutory Services across all areas demonstrating how services can work better with specific communities