The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) Mind Matters Initiative is inviting veterinary professionals to join their fourth series of Campfire Chats commencing this autumn.
The Campfire Chats, which were first set up in January 2021, provide veterinary professionals with the opportunity to come together to chat about important topics impacting their mental health and well-being.
Since their inception, the chats have continued to grow in popularity and have covered a wide range of topics, from stress and loneliness to creativity and climate change anxiety.
Tuesday, 20th September 2022, 7 pm to 8 pm. This discussion will look at the challenge of navigating change in every sense – whether managing a loss of a loved one, starting a new job, moving home, or transitioning into practice. The panel comprises Remi Onabolu RVN, Diane James (Blue Cross Pet Bereavement), and Dr Niall Connell MRCVS.
Social media and mental health
Tuesday, 11th October 2022, 7 pm to 8 pm. This discussion will delve into social media’s mental health benefits and challenges and how to manage these. Panel guests for this session include Lou Northway RVN (@louthevetnurse), Dr Bolu Eso MRCVS, and Dr Jeffrey Lambert (University of Bath).
Letting go of perfect
Wednesday, 9th November, 7 pm to 8 pm. This chat will explore the topic of perfectionism – how to recognise it, how to learn to navigate it, and how it can impact your mental well-being. Panellists include Dr Fabian Rivers MRCVS (Dready Vet), Dr Elisa Lewis (London South Bank University), and Professor Andrew Hill (York St John University).
Wednesday, 30th November, 7 pm to 8 pm. This discussion will explore many faces of maintaining balance, how we can try to implement it into busy schedules, and why finding an individual sense of balance is so important. Panellists include Laura Kidd, MRCVS (Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, Edinburgh), and Lucy Grieve MRCVS (British Equine Veterinary Association).
An additional campfire chat is also due to be run in conjunction with the RCVS Diversity and Inclusion Group, discussing the recently published RCVS/VSC (Veterinary Schools Council) BAME Student Support Working Group report. Details for this are yet to be confirmed.
Angharad Belcher, director of the Mind Matters Initiative, commented: ‘We are delighted to be bringing back our Campfire Chats for a fourth series. It’s hugely important that we can provide the professionals with a space to talk openly and honestly about the key issues impacting their mental health and well-being in a secure yet relaxed environment.’
‘We all lead hectic lives, and taking the time to come together and either discuss or simply listen to each other’s experiences can be beneficial.’
‘The sessions are open to the whole veterinary team and are free to attend. We like to keep the sessions as relaxed as possible, so while the sessions aren’t recorded, we provide a roundup of all the key information discussed after each session. These round-ups can be accessed via the Campfire Chats resource page on the MMI website or will be sent directly to you after the session.’
All members of the veterinary profession can sign up to attend the Campfire Chats via the MMI Events page.
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