I just returned from the Mental Health Services Conference in Adelaide, where I contributed to the delivery of a workshop on a course, Ending Self Stigma: (link).
The 9-week small group course is designed to help individuals with mental health problems to not internalize social stigma (self stigma), which can be extremely damaging and impair recovery and one’s quality of life. Stigma researcher Amy C. Watson originally informed me of the course in 2009, and with the consent of the course’s creators, I co-facilitated two courses in 2010 through Woden Community Service. As a result of the positive experience, I am totally sold on the value of this particular course.
I could have used Ending Self Stigma a number of years ago, after I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. It is my hope that this course will help other people with mental health problems in their own recovery process.
If you are interested in more information on this course, an article has recently been published on its pilot study:
Lucksted, A., Drapalski, A., Calmes, C., Forbes, C., DeForge, B., Boyd, J. (July, 2011). Ending Self Stigma: Pilot evaluation of a new intervention to reduce internalized stigma among people with mental illnesses. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal, 35(1):51-54.