CMHA Swift Current branch is proud to announce that its drop-in centre has moved to the clubhouse model of service delivery.
Clubhouse Model: Introduction
Whose Clubhouse is this anyway? There is only one right answer:
It belongs to the people it serves.
The Swift Current CMHA has moved to a Clubhouse model. This means that Clubhouse Members now have more input into activities and programs. It also means that Clubhouse Members will have more responsibilities in the operation of your Clubhouse.
Clubhouses are a powerful demonstration of the fact that people with mental illness can and do lead normal, productive lives.
A Clubhouse is first and foremost a local community center that offers people who have mental illness hope and opportunities to achieve their full potential through psycho-social rehabilitation (PSR).
A Clubhouse is organized to support people living with mental illness. During the course of their participation in a Clubhouse, members gain access to opportunities to rejoin the worlds of friendships, family, employment and education, and to the services and support they may individually need to continue their recovery.
A Clubhouse is a membership organization, and the people who come and participate in a Clubhouse are its members. Membership in a Clubhouse is open to anyone who has a history of mental illness. This idea of membership is fundamental to the Clubhouse concept: being a member of an organization means that an individual has both shared ownership and shared responsibility for the success of that organization.
To be a member of an organization means to belong, to fit in somewhere, and to have a place where one is always welcome.
The design of a Clubhouse engages members in every aspect of its operation, and there is always much more work to be done than can be accomplished by the few employed staff. The skills, talents, and creative ideas and efforts of each member are needed and encouraged each day. Participation is voluntary, but each member is always invited to participate in work which may include clerical duties, reception, answering phones, food service, transportation management, outreach, building maintenance, research, managing the employment and education programs, financial services and much more.
Membership in a Clubhouse gives a person living with mental illness the opportunity to share in creating successes for the community. At the same time, he or she is getting the necessary help and support to achieve individual success and satisfaction.
Clubhouses are built upon the belief that every member has the potential to sufficiently recover from the effects of mental illness to lead a personally satisfying life as an integrated member of society. Clubhouses are communities of people who are dedicated to one another’s success, no matter how long it takes or how difficult it is. Clubhouses are organized around a belief that work, and work-mediated relationships, are restorative and provide a firm foundation for growth and important individual achievement, and the belief that normalized social and recreational opportunities are an important part of a person’s path to recovery.
Meaningful Relationships: The Core Ingredient
The Clubhouse environment and structures are developed in a way to ensure that there is ample opportunity for human interaction and that there is more than enough work to do.
Members and staff share the responsibility for the successful operation of the Clubhouse. Working closely together each day, members and staff learn of each others’ strengths, talents and abilities. They also develop real and lasting friendships. Because the design of a Clubhouse is much like a typical work or business environment, relationships develop in much the same way.
The role of the staff in a Clubhouse is not to educate or treat the members. Staff is present to engage with members as colleagues in important work and to be encouraging and engaging with people who might not yet believe in themselves. Clubhouse staff is charged with being colleagues, workers, talent scouts and cheerleaders.
Clubhouse Service Executive Elections and Terms
CMHA staff will facilitate Clubhouse Service Executive elections. Positions include:
- Clubhouse President
- Clubhouse Vice-President
- Clubhouse Secretary
- Clubhouse Treasurer (if required)
Clubhouse Executive elections will be held once a year, with terms of service outlined in the Clubhouse Constitution.
Each position has its own set of duties and responsibilities for running monthly Clubhouse Members meetings.
Clubhouse Members Monthly Meetings
Monthly Clubhouse Members meetings are chaired by the Clubhouse President or Clubhouse Vice-President. The Clubhouse Secretary is responsible for preparing and distributing the monthly meeting agendas, and preparing and posting the meeting minutes on the Members Board.