Courses: Lived experience and professional insights

Understand more about mental health with courses co-produced by professionals and people with lived experience of a mental health difficulty

What makes our courses different?

Our courses are designed and delivered in partnership between people who have lived experience of mental health difficulties and those with professional experience, for example an occupational therapist, nutritionist, employment coordinator or psychiatrist. It’s known as co-production and we feel it helps to offer the best insight and experience possible. Our courses are open to adults experiencing mental health difficulties and the family and professionals who support them.


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For individuals experiencing mental health difficulties

Personal growth and change is a natural part of life. But sometimes we  don’t know what we need to do in our lives to move forward, especially around mental health difficulties and recovery. Through sharing lived experience and education, we give people the strength and skills to manage their own recovery, and achieve their goals.

For carers, families and friends

Want to understand more? We offer education and insight if you’re supporting a family member or friend with mental health difficulties. You’ll get greater understanding of mental health conditions and experiences and learn how you can look after yourself while supporting your loved one.

For professionals who support people with mental health difficulties

Are you a professional who supports others to manage their mental health? Jersey Recovery College courses teach evidence-based practical skills, tools and knowledge designed and delivered using co-production between people with lived experience and subject matter professionals. Our courses are a valuable source of CPD. In UK recovery colleges, as many as one-third of all students are professionals supporting those with mental health difficulties.


Click here for the Spring Semester 2022 Prospectus or see what courses we have coming up below.  We also have a plain English/ accessible version here.

To register for a course, click on 'register interest' under the course and follow the steps until registration is completed. 

You will receive an email after registering, some emails may go into the junk/spam mailbox.   

Should there be any changes to the courses, we will contact you directly.


What is Recovery?

Everyone’s Recovery journey is unique and deeply personal. The Mental Health Recovery model was introduced in 1980s and is now advocated in a number of countries around the world. The concept of Recovery is not just about a lack of symptoms, or problems, but is about leading a satisfying life – as each person defines it.

This course has been designed to provide an introduction to the main principles of Mental Health Recovery and how to apply them in the context of your own life.

This is one of four recovery modules: completion of all modules is beneficial to gain a full understanding of the concept.

Tuesday 1st February
09:30 - 12:30

Understanding Sleep (1 session)

Sleep is a basic human need. We will cover the benefits of sleep, what natural sleep looks like, and the detrimental impact of sleep deprivation on both our physical and mental health.

The course hopes to offer practical solutions to common sleep difficulties with an easy-to-follow plan, which students will be invited to evaluate in the second week. We will look at sleep medications and the impact that these can have on our natural sleep cycle, alongside common sleep disorders, and signposting students to where they can seek additional support should they suspect these.

Monday 7th February
17:30 - 20:30

Yoga and Mindfulness for Everyday Life

We return with this popular course, to introduce students to a variety of yoga and mindfulness practices that can be incorporated into daily living. These practices can help us to reduce physical and mental stress, stay more present and be more compassionate to yourself  and others.

Each week we explore one of the chakras using this as a theme. Most sessions will start with a brief presentation about aspects of mindfulness and yoga, followed by some breath awareness, yoga sequences and mindfulness and compassion practices. The yoga will be gentle and relaxing and include chair and wall sequences; adaptations will be offered to make the practices accessible to all.

This course is once a week for six weeks.      

Wednesday 2nd March - Wednesday 6th April
18:00 - 20:00

Identity Matters: Becoming a New You

Identity and sense of self are intertwined. Our identity is made up of our personal values, beliefs, personality - even how we look. When we experience a mental health difficulty, our identity and sense of self can become lost. We can feel pressure, through stigma, to deny our experiences and to hide what we’re going through from others in our lives.

Coming to terms with any identity transition can be difficult to navigate and accept. This course is designed to help students: Understand what it means to question your identity; Explore social stigmas and coping with society’s reaction to a new identity; Help those closest to you adjust to what they see as a changed you; Learn strategies for achieving acceptance of the new part of your identity in order that you can embrace it and integrate it into your whole self; Begin the work needed to come to peace with your new identity.

This course is suitable for anyone experiencing a mental health difficulty including those experiencing gender or sexual orientation identity challenges. It is equally valid for anyone adjusting to a recent disability, illness or significant change to life circumstance such as parenthood, widowhood or retirement.

Monday 7th March - Monday 28th March
18:00 - 20:00

What Makes a Good Life? (Autism Friendly)

Better relationships, more empathy, improved sleep and greater self-esteem. These are just some of the benefits of practicing positive psychology. Practicing positive psychology also makes you less likely to suffer from depression, addiction and burnout, and be better at dealing with difficult situations. Positive psychology is the science of what makes life worth living. It focuses on how to increase positivity, rather than just decreasing negativity, as well as focusing on what’s strong, rather than what’s wrong.

In this course, students will have opportunities to develop their knowledge of positive psychology and how to apply concepts to building a good life. We will develop our understanding of our personal strengths, the benefits of gratitude, the key features of a good life, helping others and more. We will explore these topics together through a variety of activities and discussions over two sessions.

*This course has been designed to be ‘Autism Friendly’ and therefore to meet the needs of students on the autism spectrum, or with sensory needs, although registration is not restricted to these participants. Please contact us if you would like more information.*

Tuesday 8th March - Tuesday 15th March
18:00 - 20:00

Express Yourself - Creative Writing for Wellbeing (Poetry)

Have you ever wanted to write for pleasure? Creative writing can support our wellbeing in a number of ways, including by refocusing the mind away from unhelpful thoughts, and creating healthy and positive habits. 

This course will explore poetry in several ways, such as through ‘black out’ poetry, or using well-known poems as inspiration. Students will be provided with prompts and tips to create their own creative pieces in a safe and non-judgmental space.

No previous experience or knowledge of poetry is necessary.

Tuesday 15th March - Tuesday 29th March
18:00 - 20:00

Cancer: Your Mental Health Experience

A diagnosis of a Cancer can have a significant impact on your mental health and wellbeing, as well as your physical health. We know that people diagnosed with Cancer can experience a range of mental difficulties from the point of diagnosis, and even into recovery. 

This course addresses the various challenges you might encounter at different stages of your Cancer experience, including anxiety; fear; depression; and stress. We will expand on the above to support you proactively, offering insights and tools within a supportive environment.

We are pleased to share that this course has been developed in partnership with Cancer JE and Macmillan Jersey. It has been developed with the support of the Co-op Community Fund.

Wednesday 16th March - Wednesday 23rd March
18:00 - 20:00

An Introduction to Therapy Dogs

Dogs can boost our wellbeing in a number of ways: for example, increasing our exercise and time outdoors, creating structure and routine, and through the sharing and receiving of affection. The benefits of Therapy Dogs are especially impactful. Therapy Dogs can help a wide section of the community, including those with additional needs and Mental Health difficulties.

In this introductory course, students will learn more about the history of therapy dogs, how and why they are used, and the work of Therapy Dogs Nationwide, herein Jersey.

Please note that a number of dogs will be present (with their handlers) at this session. We are pleased toshare that this course has been developed in partnership with Therapy Dogs Nationwide, Jersey.


Saturday 19th March
10:00 - 12:00

Drawing and Painting for Wellbeing (Visual Journaling)

*RESCHEDULED - new date*

Taking part in creative activities is proven to have several emotional and mental health benefits. These include personal expression, confidence building, and reducing stress, by allowing your mind to rest from intrusive or unhelpful thoughts.

In this course, we will explore Art in the forms of drawing and painting by using visual journaling. This is a practical course, where participants will take part in producing their own artwork, and reflect how and why it might benefit their wellbeing, within a safe space. No prior experience is necessary, and materials are provided.

Once a week for three weeks.

Monday 21st March - Monday 4th April
18:30 - 20:30

Suicide Awareness

This course will show you how to listen to, talk with and support someone who is suicidal. This will be delivered through group exercises and discussion.

Saturday 26th March
09:30 - 12:30

Essential Oils for Wellbeing

*RESCHEDULED - new date*

Our sense of smell is powerful and is closely linked to emotions and memory; the sensory experience itself can have an uplifting effect. There is research demonstrating the use of essential oils to improve and maintain mental health.

This course will introduce what essential oils are, how they can support mental wellbeing (including reducing stress, improving sleep, enhance present moment awareness) in a safe and effective way. The course will provide information on how the oils work, what their uses are, and how to use them. We will also invite you to  explore a couple of selected oils.

Saturday 2nd April - Saturday 9th April
10:00 - 12:00

Resilience and Wellbeing in Recovery - Virtual Classroom

The terms ‘resilience’ and ‘wellbeing’ are used frequently today. This course is designed to enable students to effectively apply strategies to improve their resilience and wellbeing. Through various individual and group activities we will explore the difference between the two terms, and shine a light on ways of improving both, for optimal health.

Monday 4th April
17:30 - 20:30

Introduction to Co-Production

Co-production is a term used often, in and around social services - but what does it really mean?

The course explores what co-production is, how it differs from other engagement models and how it works best, why it is an important and powerful approach to designing and delivering services. It explores the advantages and disadvantages of co-production and how to apply the co-production model to local projects.

This course is suitable for anyone interested in using the co-production model or participating in co-production work.

Tuesday 5th April
17:30 - 20:30

Introduction to Trauma

The introduction to trauma course will be looking at what trauma is and the potential impact of traumatic experiences on us, our lives and relationships based on the latest research, which particularly focuses on the body’s responses. We will discuss tools that can help us with regulation and also briefly describe potential  therapeutic models that are sometimes used.

Thursday 7th April
18:00 - 21:00