Focus Up

Active participation of people living with mental illness and family members in shaping mental health care

Focus UP User Participation group
User Participation is about making sure people affected by severe mental illness are involved in leading, influencing, designing and shaping mental health policy, practice and services. Our User Participation group (FocusUP) is made up of people affected by severe mental illness and family members.
The aim of FocusUP groups are to:
Empower services users and carers to be the voice for involvement and improvement in all services that affect their lives
Work with mental health services to enhance the service user experience in inpatient & community settings
Raise awareness of severe mental illness through shared story telling of individual and family experiences
Campaign to reduce stigma and discrimination
Support us to develop and shape our charity

Focus UP impacts

I joined Focus on Mental Illness because I wanted to make a difference in MH (mental health) both from a service user and recovery perspective, and to help with decisions made by our government. What this means to me is that we get a little bit closer, step by step so that the next generation has a better intervention hopefully much before the point of crisis. I strongly believe this is both better for the public community and public purse.

FocusUP Volunteer

Having the diagnosis of a mental illness myself and struggled through our Adult Mental Health system for some year, I wanted to share my experience with others and give a little back to the Charity that helped make a big difference

FocusUP Volunteer

I joined the group in October 2020, in order to, not only improve my own mental health, but, having worked in a mental health industry myself, to impart some of my own skills in order to help others. The group is a lovely 'second family' to me. I feel supported, useful, and cared about. I also enjoy the fact that some of my administration and fundraising skills are still being put to good use

FocusUP Volunteer

Focus UP has made a difference by informing us of issues we may not otherwise be aware of as a management group. We can then address accordingly.

Operational Management Board Representative

...through this joint project we hope to build a strong relationship with Focus MI and the wider Jersey community. By doing so we will be able to replenish and refresh those normal resources found in homes across Jersey for people on Orchard House. It has been a pleasure to build this project with people accessing our service and Focus MI and we very much look forward to further projects in the future.

A professional involved in project RISE


If you’re severely affected by mental illness and would like to draw from your lived experience to make a positive change, please consider volunteering for Focus UP.