Trevor facilitated a workshop for the Coventry City Council on Monday and I assisted with a couple of drama sketches.
Carers of people with mental health problems
Managers (Social Services)
I played a mother-of-4. Her husband was suicidally depressed, her one child was autistic and another child was ill and needed to see a doctor but she couldn't get through on the telephone. Stress. She phoned her social worker (played by Trevor) who had problems of his own: he was under a lot of stress at work and his wife was diagnosed that morning with terminal cancer.
We performed the sketch twice: the first time the situation was handled rather badly, causing the mother to break down as she was being torn in all directions and just needed a little help. After much discussion and based on the comments of the participants, we acted the sketch again in the afternoon, portraying a better and more positive way for the social worker to help his client.
The conference was certainly an eye-opener, meeting carers and hearing their stories. I just hope that the workshop made some kind of difference.
Trevor and I feel so blessed that the only ties we have in our lives are 2 hairy canines.