We are happy to say our warmest words of gratitude to everybody who supported our first project at GG. Your generous support helped us cover 2-month costs of our Clubhouse psychosocial rehabilitation program for adults suffering severe mental illness.
The Clubhouse rehabilitation approach is based on partnership between members (participants or psychiatric users) and staff of the program. We do together everything that is necessary for our Clubhouse community every day, sharing responsibilities and rights: plan our activities, cook free meals, go shopping to buy food-stuffs and other things that we need in our everyday operations, do all the work round the Clubhouse space, do reach out and motivate those members who are not very active and absent in the program currently, organise social and leisure events for the Clubhouse community, write letters, write articles at the Clubhouse web-site and social media, help mentally ill members return to paid employment, search for potential employers, hold English and computer literacy classes, assist members to get/contibue their education in the larger society, discuss and make decisions about our rehabilitation program, work with mass media, make presentations, videos and other information materials that help us fight against stigma. Every activity is carried out by staff and members (participants or program users) together, side-by-side. This helps members learn a lot, gain or regain a lot of skills useful for their independent living as well as regain self-confedence and self-esteem. Solely for the reporting purposes we call this fulfilment of various tasks by means of which Clubhouse members gain skills and knowledge "informal trainings of skills".
Now we are happy to share with you what have been done in the reporting period - January and February, 2017.
131 informal individual or mini-group trainings of 8 skills of everyday living and simple vocational skills, namely:
- 20 trainings of food preparation and cooking;
- 7 group trainings of cleaning and hygiene;
- 9 trainings of money managenment and going shopping;
- 37 individual trainings of working with household appliance (a microwave oven, grill, blender, toaster, dishwasher, washing-machine, sewing-machine);
- 30 trainings in planning activities during the day (week, month, year) ;
- 16 individual trainings of working with office appliances (a photocopier, scanner, multi-functional office set-up);
- 4 individual trainings of skills of answering telephone calls and holding telephone conversations;
- 8 individual trainings of courier work.
Moreover, we continued English and computer literacy classes (totally 8 classes were held). We continue search for new potential employers for those Clubhouse members who are interested in getting jobs and started cooperation with Moscow Youth Employment Center. The Center held 2 special events for the group of Clubhouse members: a training how to prepare an effective resume and a professional orientation (careerguidance) session. No less important part of the rehabilitation program is social and leisure activities and events. Mental illness strikes not only abilities to work but also abilities to rest, to have a fun, to socialize. That is why Russian House helps people suffering severe mental health problems organize their leisure and free time. In January-February we held 7 various social events.
As most of Russia House members live on their pension benefits which are about $200-250 per month, free-of-charge meals are very important for them. During the reporting period Russia House served 122 lunch meals for the Clubhouse members. In addition, every week people living alone with no help of their families could take away food products.
23 people participated in the Clubhouse program very actively. 7 more studied or work. The others were not so active as mental illness dispowers people and makes them indifferent and frustrated. That is why the Clubhouse community works hard to help passive members return to active and full life and tries to motivate them to get out and participate the rehabilitation program.
This is only a small piece of our everyday work to support Russia House members. We can see that lives of those people who come to the Clubhouse are slowly being changed for the better. What can be more impressive? We do it together, dear GG supporters of Russia House! Thank you!