Social participation and recovery orientation in a "low threshold" community mental health service: An ethnographic study
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionCogent Medicine. 2017, 4 . 10.1080/2331205X.2017.1362840
Accessible and flexible “low threshold” community services have been recommended in order to assist people’s social participation and recovery from mental health problems. In this ethnographic study from a Norwegian city, we studied activities and social interaction within three community mental health centres with a low threshold organisation and recovery approach. These centres were part of the same community mental health service, and aimed to function both as social meeting-places and as steps towards rehabilitation. Through participant observation and qualitative interviews, we explored in what way this service could contribute to service users’ recovery. Central features of social interaction were support from both professionals and peers, along with sharing of practical advice and experiences. This encouraged social participation and seemed to enhance mutual experiences of recognition. In the article we highlight how these centres could assist recovery from mental health problems by functioning as available “resource-bases” in the community.