my comment on seemenow Judith Robertson’s blog post

Learning from social reporting at #seeme14 by Judith Robertson, seemenow programme director

“Judith thanks for giving your take on the SeeMe event from the perspective of the overseer.

You mention voices of dissent, I would rather describe them as critical voices, as dissent means not commonly or “officially” held but I think critical voices at the event were more than what we heard in tweets, blogs and officially. As an activist and campaigner I tend to hear the critical opinions because people feel safe in saying it to me. In fact I got an Email from a colleague, a worker at the event, who said that very same thing. That although they didn’t agree what everything I said they appreciated that we could have a conversation, agree to differ and they would be safe in my company.

I want to commend you in your role at the event where I did think you were an overseer, keeping an eye on what was going on and supporting your staff if/when they needed it. I witnessed this and was impressed. I also noticed that you were listening and open to learning. That you didn’t have to be the centre of attention or the loudest voice, despite being the new lead in seeme. I do like to see servant leadership, it’s getting to be a rarer quality these days.

I am hopeful of positive change in the new anti-stigma campaign in Scotland and for the voices of people with lived experience to become more meaningfully involved in mental health matters. To have equal places at the table and to be held in as much high regard as the biggest paid worker. Maybe even more so. I’ve mostly worked with volunteers over the years since 1980 and getting into community development, and often been a volunteer myself. Volunteering was a major part of my recovery from mental illness in 2003/4.

So I wish you all the best Judith in your emerging role with seemenow, or whatever it it going to be named, and I hope you enjoy the ride. Chrys”

 

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