Authors: Jon Kroschel, Cate Hale, Sophie Mayer
Event: 2017 TheMHS Conference
Subject: Funding – Changing Models, Systems,Reducing Stigma and Discrimination,Lived Experience, Recovery
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: Aim of the presentation: for participants to learn how to build a grass-roots response to excessive clutter, including running "Buried in Treasures" groups within their own communities. It is intended that the presentation will demonstrate the difference Buried in Treasures makes to a community and will allow participants to experience what it might be like to be a person living with Hoarding Disorder.
The workshop will be conducted in four distinct parts:
(1) The facilitators will walk participants of the workshop through an exercise which will allow them to experience what it's like for a person living with the challenge of Hoarding. This will give participants a deeper insight into the thoughts and feelings that often accompany this condition. The exercise will be conducted in three parts:
a. De-role from ‘staff/manager’ to ‘person’:
• “Please take off your name tag with your position title on it and put on a new label with your first name”.
b. Build a reference point for the participants to receive the next lot of information:
• “Think about some of the things that you own, which are very precious to you”. People may think of baby clothes, photos of loved ones etc.
• “Imagine that someone takes those items away from you without giving you any choice in the matter. This can be what many participants experience when faced with a clutter challenge”.
c. After the mock Information and Buried in Treasures Session, return participants to their roles:
• “Think about the role that you have in your workplace. How could you use the information you learnt today in your organisation to run a successful Buried in Treasures group?”
(2) Mock Information Session: This will allow the facilitators to provide participants with an overview of the course. The focus will be what is done differently in the Canberra “Buried in Treasures” groups. For example:
• Grassroots/ Canberra Living Conditions Network and the importance of seed funding;
• Peer led and low to no cost;
• Post groups and hands on support;
• Data collection Canberra-wide, assisting the whole community;
• Education and support for the wider community: family, friends, neighbours, workers.
(3) First session of a peer-led “Buried in Treasures” group: Finally, the facilitators will present the first “Buried in Treasures” session, adapted to cover a few small exercises, relevant to participants of the workshop. This will provide participants with practical experience of a peer-led workshop, providing insight to what people with this challenge experience in these groups.
(4) Q and A session will be provided at the end of the workshop.
Learning Objective 1: Hoarding is often misunderstood and highly stigmatised. Participants of this workshop will gain an understanding of what can be achieved through collaboration of the community at a grassroots level (for example addressing gaps in services, seed funding and network of supports), to begin addressing the impact of excessive clutter.
Participants will also understand the positive (for example, increased understanding and insight) and negative (for example, lack of experience in a group facilitator role) features of employing peer facilitators and the processes through which organisations can bring “Buried in Treasures” to their own communities.
Learning Objective 2: “Buried in Treasures” specifically supports participants to begin to understand their own predicament and what can be done to reduce their clutter. In addition, many “Buried in Treasures” participants experience a high level of comorbidity or life experiences that impact their experience of hope and recovery. They gain support from peers with the same disorder, gain a recovery focus from the peer facilitators and on-going support beyond the group (for example, continuation of group peer-support in the Golden Shovel Club or Finder/Keeper Groups) to continue to work towards their preferred future.
Tolin, D.F., Frost, R.O., & Steketee, G. (2014). Buried in Treasures: Help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving and Hoarding. New York.
Frost, R.O., Ruby, D. & Shuer, L.J. (2012). The Buried in Treasures Workshop: Waitlist Control Trial of Facilitated Support Groups for Hoarding. Behavioural Research and Therapy, 50(11), 661–667.
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