Positive social connections are important for our physical and mental wellbeing. They can provide emotional support, practical assistance, information and a sense of belonging.
Some people experience difficulties in connecting with other people, particularly when experiencing mental health problems or if they are excluded from the normal activities of society.
Connecting People provides evidence-informed guidance for practitioners about the processes which are required to support people to feel less isolated and more connected with others.
The Connecting People Implementation Study aims to investigate if Connecting People can be used with high fidelity in community mental health teams. A pilot study in England found that when Connecting People was fully integrated into health and social care teams, service users enhanced their connections to family, friends and members of the local community. However, local authority and NHS teams found it difficult to implement Connecting People fully. To assist practitioners to use Connecting People we developed an implementation toolkit, comprising guidance on training, practice and implementation. This study evaluates whether or not this helps community mental health teams to implement Connecting People in their routine practice.
The Connecting People Implementation Study is led by the International Centre for Mental Health Social Research in the Department of Social Policy and Social Work at the University of York in collaboration with the McPin Foundation, the University of Central Lancashire and the London School of Economics. It is funded by the National Institute for Health Research School for Social Care Research in England.