Meet the Local Associations

10: Bournemouth by Mrs.


is Hon.



Bournemouth, to know the town in which our Association has been working and growing during the past 15 years? To know something of Bournemouth gives, perhaps, the first clue to what we feel, as an Association, is our main function. Bournemouth, as many of you will have seen, is a very lovely seaside resort?pleasant gardens, build-

ings, views, entertainments?but

in its boundaries lems. Like many

withmany real probfair lady, Bourne-

are a

mouth has frequently preferred to show her beauty and to


human frailties.



This may well be true of other towns, but Bournemouth has very great social and economic problems which present a real challenge to the social services a challenge which Bournemouth has, at times, been slow

to meet.





tackling these problems with fresh vigour, but too often lacking in sup-

port from


Higgins, A.A.P'S*^'

Secretary of the Bournemouth Association for Mental Health.

come on a visit to the

you WILL County



So it is that the aim and function of our Association has been, and still is, an educational one; education in the widest sense, of stimulating awareness and activity among those in authority and of constantly trying to encourage, by increasing knowledge and interest, a constructive attitude amongst the people of Bournemouth. Each year, we have a programme of speakers, discussions and film shows; the subjects are varied and speakers may be from among our own members or invited from away; meetings end with coffee and biscuits and an opportunity for informal talk. At present, we have undertaken five special projects, which, we feel are worthwhile and may be of interest to 16

others. The first began, four years ag?' v we felt that there might well ^ a need for those engaged in s?clL work in Bournemouth to have talk111? opportunity of meeting informally and really getting to kn? one another and the services represent. A very successful tea-tin\ reception was held, to which voluntar< and statutory workers were invitedsimilar meeting was held by reqUe, the following year and again on a th' occasion. It was now felt, by appreciation shown of this opportun1; to meet, that a group might be shed in its own right. So it was M the B.A.M.H. was responsible for.'1 inauguration of a "Social Group"?now flourishing and fulfil' ^ a real need among workers in the are e A second undertaking is again












The Association has arranged * courses, each consisting of four at weekly intervals, for the mouth Samaritans and League Friends of Psychiatric Hospitals. ' | first course in 1962 was so success! that a second series was asked i ^ and has been given this year. Atte/V,

ta'? B?urn0f

averaged between fifty and sl*.e meeting. It was felt that work involved was very worthwh1 The third project of interest had ance

at each

roots in



given during


62 programme by a medical consul*? ^ on "Sex Education". The Meeting v j, very well attended and aroused ni^ interest and discussion, particula with reference to local difficulties a jt needs. By the end of the meeting ^ was proposed, and accepted, tha* I working party be set up to the local situation. Members were ^ opted to the working party froIVyct those fields connected with the subj .




( I

Youth Organiser, on- After a conerable amount of hard work, the d was produced and present reP?rt to Association in November of this v year. Perhaps an even more outcome was that, from the between various members Working party and our Associa(j n> it has been possible to establish a sPeakers willing and able la'k to the schools in this area whene this is needed. ^OUrt^ scheme, at present in ODe is perhaps of more limited P0rtance jn that it really affects us o y within the Association. This is type of "Hospitality Scheme", by our Executive Committee AH two needs. Firstly the Executjv ^ that after an Association has existence for as long as ours, 1116 form of reassessment can be a Very good thing. Each member the Executive has undertaken j an informal "get together" arrange a members in their locality; to ^eas about the functioning of the Association, to find out what




at"st aiK*


CQP?rtant option ^


tovf1Sed be6



people really feel about the programmes and activities and to assess members' feelings as to the direction in which they think the Association should be moving in the future. The second object of these informal occasions will be to give members of the Executive a better chance to get to know the newer members and to give those members a chance of knowing others in small, informal groups. The final project we want to share with you, is one about which we are all very excited. The Mayor of Bournemouth has just held a meeting of representatives of the leading organisations in Bournemouth, at which it has been agreed that a Mental Health Appeal should be launched in April 1964. The Association and particularly our President were instrumental in stimulating interest in this, and it was with pride that we were able to hear our President formally propose at the Mayoral Meeting that the Appeal be launched. This looks like really hard work ahead for us all, but will be well worthwhile to ensure the success of our



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