Life Story Work
Making Waves are working in collaboration with Helen Moya from the University of Nottingham to develop a Life story project within Mental Health services.
We had some initial funding from the Involvement team (TIP funding) which we have used to run a pilot project at Dovecote Lane, one of Nottinghamshire Healthcare Trusts residential homes. 3 people who live there were supported to work on their life stories and we supplied the staff with ideas and suggestions for ways of working with people. In 2009 we received funding for a 3 year project from the Institute of Mental Health to develop a toolkit of resources that could be used across mental health services.
What is life story work?
A life story is a biographical account of a person’s life. This includes stories of experiences and relationships that have shaped the person’s identity. For example: stories and photographs from childhood, including family relationships, holidays and friends; and any significant event in the person’s life. These are the kinds of things that make us who we are, and is sometimes the kind of information that is difficult to access for some people who use services. The life story can be presented in a number of different ways and formats including: scrap books, pc based formats, DVDs, memory boxes, posters, and video diaries. We intend to explore these and other methods in order to produce a ‘toolkit’ of methods to help staff in the care setting and people with lived experience engage in life story work. The toolkit is available online.