YOUR Recovery Pathways – Enrolment For May Now Open

Enrolment Now Open

We’re pleased to announce that our last programme for the academic year is now open for enrolment.

Open to anyone who has attended a previous YOU Programme and free to anyone living in Central Bedfordshire or Bedford.

Impact’s 9 week, mental health recovery programme – YOUR Recovery Pathways. The words “mental health recovery” can mean different things to different people.

What we mean by recovery is to use the strengths we have to get better or better manage how we feel.

If you feel you need to make some important changes to have the kind of life you really want, you will learn a huge amount by attending one of our enlightening programmes.

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A Story Of Success

We love to get keep in touch with our learners and, of course, we love it even more when we know what we do is making a difference.

Here’s a message we received last week from someone who attended the online version of the YOU Programme and The YOUR Recovery Pathways courses.

Please forgive me for not messaging you sooner. It’s just a quick message… a “thank you” more than anything.

Since attending your course at the end of 2019, my life has definitely improved. I think of all the things you taught us, the RAMPS were the greatest help to me. It gave my life a new focus and I began to enjoy things again. Being open and talking about how I’d been feeling was also essential in my moving forward.

I am so thankful that I went on the course when I did… because who knew that this pandemic was just around the corner. Heaven knows where my mental health would be now had I not done the course when I did. So many people will be experiencing some kind of mental health issue, now and in the future because of this.

Anyway, a BIG, BIG thank you for helping me through that very difficult period. Thanks to Jackie and Harry as well, of course. I know you’ll have been helping many more people since I was on my course… so carry on doing your amazing work.

A recent learner

Breathe, Be Kind, Laugh & Connect

Breath, Be Kind, Laugh & Connect

It’s difficult, it’s frustrating, it’s different … this year’s festive period is going to be different, that’s for certain.

So, as our last message for 2020, a little encouragement, advice and support.

For each and every one of you, whatever you have been through this year, whatever your fears are for next year and whatever emotions you are feeling right now, know this;

You can get through this. You will get through this – we will get through this.

Spend some of this quiet festive period on some well-deserved self-care and respite from a year filled with fear.

Use this time to calmly observe racing thoughts of uncertainty and respond to them with kindness and understanding, after all, it’s okay to feel frightened.

Allow them to drift through your mind but don’t engage with them, try not to hold on to those thoughts. Instead, see the strength and resilience you have found to make it through such a tough year. Remember there is love and support around you, from family, friends, colleagues and peers.

Breathe. Practice slowing your breath and feeling the breath enter and leave your body.

Laugh. Play silly games, watch stand up or a funny movie, smile – a lot!

Connect. Reach out to people, a Hi! Or ‘how are you?’ helps both ways – we are all in need.

If you do find it difficult to manage and your emotions are shouting louder than you and your rational thoughts, don’t be afraid to reach out and talk to someone, you won’t be the only one seeking help.

Useful Information & Contact Details

Wishing you all a safe and restful festive period and look forward to writing to you again with hope for 2021.

Déanne, Jackie and the Impact Team


To each and every one of you for doing the best you could to get through this year.

To all those who lost loved ones, friends or colleagues and have found the resilience to move forward.

To all Front-Line workers, whether they are NHS staff, supermarket workers or refuse collectors, we recognise your commitment and offer you our heartfelt thanks.

To the Arts, Leisure and Entertainment industries – know that you are needed now more than ever to help bring this country back together – we recognise your importance in the fabric of our vital social connectedness.

To every person and organisation doing what they can to alleviate loneliness, ill health and poverty for those in need.

To the BESS team at Central Bedfordshire Council for their patience and in their commitment to support all of their service providers to continue delivery, online, across this county.

To Phil Evans, Consultant and Director at Rubber Duck Digital, for enabling and supporting Impact to move from classroom-based courses to online in less than one week, and to maintain the quality and effectiveness of our educational programmes.

To the Impact team – who are, quite simply, amazing…

Be kind to yourselves and to others, congratulate yourself for getting through and we’ll see you for a fresh start in 2021

We’re Still Here

We’re Still Here

It’s funny, but because of the services we provide linked to managing our mental wellbeing, many people presumed that we, the Impact team, would naturally know what to do to keep ourselves healthy and well this year.

We thought so too but it wasn’t the case at all!

The harsh reality for the team this year has been very different to other people’s expectation of us.

It actually took several months for Jackie (Director & Facilitator) and me to have a very honest discussion early in the summer about how our tried and tested wellbeing practices were simply not doing the job in helping us through a very scary time in our lives.

Why? The answer came after an extremely compassionate and honest talk about the emotions we too were experiencing during the first half of this year and our combined and separate struggles to cope with uncertainty.

The answer surprisingly appeared as a question ‘What would we normally do to keep ourselves well during a Global Pandemic?’ As soon as we realised, we couldn’t answer, we strangely found the answer!

As neither of us had ever been through a pandemic, why did we then think that we would have the ‘right’ wellbeing tools and practices?

It was quite a revelation to reach this ‘eureka’ moment and once we had allowed this knowledge to sink in, we both started to feel differently about how we were managing, how we were feeling and what the possibilities and opportunities might be for us to try something new to help ourselves!

So, if you have been hard on yourself for not doing better than you think you should, ask yourself – when was the last time you went through a Global Pandemic?

Festive Update

Impact’s Festive Update

Happy Holidays

With just a couple of days before the Impact team finish for the year and for a much needed rest over the festive period, we have a few notes and suggestions that we hope you will find useful and informative.

Congratulate Yourself

It hasn’t been an easy year.

We have all struggled at some point with a mix of emotions like fear, uncertainty, sadness, anxiety and frustration, to name but a few. Emotions born out of a situation that we have had no control over.

For 10 months we have done the best we can with the strengths and knowledge we have to help ourselves and our friends and family, manage heightened emotions and get through these frightening and unprecedented times.

So, as we move into this festive and hopefully restful period, a time of sharing love, happiness, joy and peace, let us take some time to consciously congratulate ourselves for getting through a journey we have been forced to travel this year.

Congratulating ourselves may take more than a simple self-pat on the shoulder and a flippant ‘well done you’ to feel a sense of achievement and peace.

Here are a few suggestions to help you and your loved ones move into this festive period as 2020 comes to an end and we reflect on the challenges we have overcome.

Write It Down

Take a moment to consider some of the specific challenges you have encountered this year as a result of Covid-19. Choose two or three that you feel affected you the most from your list and note them down, then consider in what ways did you help yourself manage those times/events/situations?

Jot down whatever comes to mind, it doesn’t matter if its one word, a sentence or a long paragraph. The important point here is to recognise how you helped yourself.

Share & Declare

Carefully choose from friends, colleagues and family – or a mixture of all! Agree to talk about the difficult times you have all been through but without being negative – it’s a challenge – try not to compare your experiences with others, we all experience situations differently.

You might want to discuss who of you have turned to social media in the past to share your challenges? The purpose of this activity is to recognise those moments when you want to be negative and to ‘flip’ the negativity with how you overcome the difficulty. This really helps us to self-congratulate ourselves!

Creative Self-Care

If writing or talking about the challenges of 2020 is difficult or uncomfortable for you, why not get creative?

Creativity has no rules, so do what feels good for you! Get creative to demonstrate how you feel about getting through the year.

Paint, draw, colour, knit, cook, sculpt, whatever works for you will work to serve as your thank you for making it through the year. Don’t forget to sign it from you, to you 😊

New Course Dates For 2021

New Course Dates For 2021 Are Now Available

We’ll be starting 2021 well rested, renewed and with the expected Impact drive and energy to continue delivering our online mental wellbeing programmes.

If you or someone you know would like to join us on our first YOU Programme starting on Tuesday January 12th, please get in touch to secure your place as soon as possible

Our first YOUR Recovery Pathways of 2021 begins on Tuesday 9th February. We recommend, if possible, attending the YOU programme before attending our longer programme.

Other YOU & YOUR Programme details will be online soon for the remainder of 2021.

However, if you would like to know more about attending either programme, please do get in touch as this can help to secure your place!

If you are a professional and would like to know more about our programmes, we offer a service called Impact In Action, which provides professionals the opportunity to visit Impact in action and chat to our learners, online or in the classroom about the benefits of attending our courses.

Please contact the team for further details.

If you would like to register and enrol, follow the links below.

Starts Sept 22nd
Mental Health Services Bedfordshire

YOUR Recovery Pathways – September 2021 MHD210203

Impact's 9 week, mental health recovery programme – YOUR Recovery Pathways. The words “mental health recovery” can mean different things to different people. What we mean by recovery is to use the strengths we have to get better or better manage how we feel. If you feel you need to make some important changes to have the kind of life you really want, you will learn a huge amount by attending one of our enlightening programmes.

Login Or Enrol

Starts Nov 16th
the you programme mental health peer support in Bedfordshire

YOU Programme – November 2021 MHD210401

The YOU Programme can be the most important first step to feeling better, improving your mental health and wellbeing and getting your life back on track through supporting education and peer empowerment.

Enrol Or Login

Starts Oct 26th
the you programme mental health peer support in Bedfordshire

YOU Programme – October 2021 MHD210301

The YOU Programme can be the most important first step to feeling better, improving your mental health and wellbeing and getting your life back on track through supporting education and peer empowerment.

Enrol Or Login

Starts Sept 7th
the you programme mental health peer support in Bedfordshire

YOU Programme – September 2021 MHD210201

The YOU Programme can be the most important first step to feeling better, improving your mental health and wellbeing and getting your life back on track through supporting education and peer empowerment.

Enrol Or Login

A Thank You Note From A Learner

It’s always lovely to get feedback from learners on completing one of our programmes, specially when it has such positive outcomes.

Here’s one that has really made everyone one on the team smile. 😊

Dear Deanne and Jackie,

A short note to share good news and to thank you both for the support during the courses.

The news is, I landed a job overseas, and I am travelling this weekend to take charge.

And I want to thank you both for the learnings and insights from the course, without which it would not have been possible for me to stay focussed and drive forward to what I wanted to achieve. Thank you both very much for your support, understanding and patience throughout. And thanks a ton for the lessons and tools I am equipped with. Btw, the book is travelling with me to the new job 😃  

Please extend my sincere thanks to Harry and Elaine as well. Our course group is meeting every Wednesday on Zoom to continue to support each other, yesterday was the second meet up.

With lots of love and many thanks once again

A Recent Impact Learner

World Mental Health Day 2020

World Mental Health Day 2020 – Where Has The Year Gone!

You don’t need to answer that by the way… :-)

Since our amazing celebration for WMHD in October last year, so much has happened to us, to you, our communities and to the world.

Across the planet we have shared in our disbelief of the lives taken because of this pandemic, of the chaos and trauma it has caused and of our mutual fear of a very uncertain future.

Closer to home, we continue to worry for the safety and health of our friends, NHS staff, colleagues and loved ones; our jobs, our children’s education, our parents, grandparents lives and our dreams…

With unprecedented levels of worry, stress, anxiety and fear, the team at Impact has worked harder than ever this year to adapt our courses to live, online delivery, funded by Central Bedfordshire and Bedford Borough Councils.

We have increased access to support and learning to all of our learners with Feel Good Friday Sessions and Impact BaseCamp.

And we fully intend to celebrate World Mental Health Day this year with as many people as possible!

So, as we tentatively move into autumn and winter with changeable government guidance and often distressing daily news, how do we ready ourselves for the shorter days and our beautiful but inclement weather?

Where do we start to piece together the familiar fabric of our lives?

Our online celebration of World Mental Health Day is open to anyone who has attended one of our courses, anyone who is thinking of attending and mental health professionals or referrers who want to meet the Impact team and to find out more about our courses, please feel free to join us on Zoom on Friday October 9th, 2020.

World Mental Health Day with Words & Cake!

Impact will be celebrating WMHD on Friday 9th October, 200, live on Zoom from 11 am to 2 pm.

If you’d like to join us, please let us know by using the registration form at the bottom of this page.

What Do I Need To Bring

The Words

This year we will be celebrating with the power of supporting words, written and given by those who have struggled with their wellbeing, still struggle and those doing their best to get through tough times.

Those who have faced fears, dedicated to help themselves and who are now journeying with us to learn all they can about how to stay well.

Our courageous and lovely Impact learners!

Words of support are being collected and compiled to create a web-Page of Love, Support & Encouragement for anyone struggling with their mental wellbeing.

This page will be accessible to everyone, wherever they might be and to help with whatever they are going through.

Give Us Your Words!!

If you would like to share your words of love, support or encouragement, we would love to have them.

One word, two words or a sentence, whatever works for you, say it from the heart.

Let us know what it is you would have liked to have heard when you were struggling.

Words Without Names

Send your words here. Your name will not be posted with your words.

World Mental Health Day 2020 Words

The CakeWhere would World Mental Health Day be without cake!

World Mental Health Day 2020 - Cake
Bake A Cake For WMHD

Start planning your homemade, shop bought, home delivery – whatever you decide – WMHD cake.

Let’s get together on the 9th and talk support with cake and friends.

Let’s spend two hours giving words of love, support and encouragement to those in need.

Let’s share some time, some fun, some wisdom, and remind ourselves of the joy of being with people, appreciating our journeys and freely giving hope to those who may be ready to take the first step on their journey.

There will also be bite size learning sessions as reminders for our previous learners and to support others in learning how to stay well, particularly in these trying times.

We’ll be awarding “Best Cake”, “Funniest Cake” and other awards on the day

What’s happening on the day?

11.00 – Welcome

11.30 – Introduction

11.45 – Breakout session 1 – All about the YOU Programme – Find out more about the course

12.15 – Why Words for World Mental Health Day?

12.45 – Breakout session 2 – All about YOUR Recovery Pathways

13.00 – Practice for YOU & YOUR time

13 .30 – Show us your Cake!

13.50 – Round up of the day

2.00       End

Register here for World Mental Health Day