YMCA Liverpool & Sefton has been on a journey to become a psychologically informed service using Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) as our means to understand service users, processes, people, teams and systems spanning over 5 years. Beginning as one off training and emerging into CAT case management throughout our services and systems has been enlightening, rewarding and challenging. We have taken the end of one project and the results of an evaluation to pause and reflect on our past and our future in how we sustainably maintain our commitment to using CAT to deliver relationally informed care and support to people who use our services and in the way we think about our organisation and it’s processes and enactments at all levels.
We have applied CAT as a case management tool across our homeless services, we are working to embed it in our domestic abuse provision and mental health service. For the first time we have directly employed a CAT therapist and a trainee Counsellor who will progress to becoming a CAT therapist. These posts sit in our Rehabilitation service – RISE Recovery, working with people who are seeking treatment for a drug or alcohol issue.
The challenge of embedding change in a voluntary sector organisation is both simple and complex. We do not have the bureaucratic challenges faced by colleagues in the NHS or local government but we do not have the infrastructure and resources either. Change at scale is challenging and platforms for influence can often feel minimal but there is also a sense that we are a test bed for something so valuable for people who use our services that with robust evidence, tenacity and good connections we can begin to share the difference that CAT has made to how we think, feel and communicate about everything we do.
We are now tendering for an ACAT accredited partner to support us by facilitating supervision groups and helping us to develop some training to empower other organisation to become relationally informed.
The tender can be downloaded here : YMCA Tender – psychology partner
For an informal conversation please email CEO, Ellie on email@example.com and we can arrange a time to speak.