Amanda Bailey is the Deputy Manager of CNWL Recovery and Wellbeing College. She has a background in social work and nursing but she says, “It is my personal experience with mental health services that is really important in my job as a peer trainer.”
Amanda was first introduced to the RIX Wiki in October 2015. After attending training and playing on a Wiki of her own, which helped calm her worries about using new technology, Amanda started to think about the Wiki in relation to her own health plan. “I really believe the Health and Wellbeing plan to be central to my recovery because before, I was just surviving on a day to day existence. I find it’s really useful for actually learning about yourself and not just being passive and accepting what people give to you. It helps you to learn what works and doesn’t work for you, the warning signs and triggers. I found the original Health and Wellbeing plan very useful but I think the Wiki is a step up from that. It has the same principles and values but it just allows you to be so creative.”
Amanda describes the Wiki as a dynamic extension of the Health and Wellbeing plan. “A health plan is constantly being changed and updated. Having the plan on the Wiki makes it much easier to do that, as well as keep professionals and supporters informed,” she says.
Amanda also sees the Wiki as a door, leading to a deeper understanding of oneself. “Although the paper Health and Wellbeing plan is a very effective tool, I think it’s quite constraining when you’re filling it in. It’s all words and boxes. It’s very much about who you are in the present. But when you try to do this on the Wiki, you start putting things in, images and links and you start thinking, ‘Oh, I might try that or I want to do that someday.’ It completely opens your world up.”
For Amanda building her Wiki made her realise what she really enjoyed and helped her to discover new things that she wanted to do in the future, for example, to walk a half marathon.
For those who are considering a Wiki, Amanda encourages people not to be put off by technology. “It’s really important to learn from someone who has their own Wiki and has had time to develop it. That way you have something to reference.” She also stresses the importance of understanding the Health and Wellbeing plan “in terms of getting to know yourself, why that is so important, and how that can make such a difference.”
Lastly Amanda says it is important to understand that the Wiki takes time to develop. “It’s not something you can do in a week. It takes time and, as you evolve, your Wiki will evolve too. I think the Wiki is amazing! I feel so excited about its use in so many different areas of healthcare and I think it would really appeal to younger people who are so skilled with technology and mobile phones.”