HARPING ON

A COMMENT ON A LOCAL MENTAL HEALTH ADVOCACY GROUP…

Oh my, I just wrote four or five hundred words and then noticed DANNY LEMON had written more and clicked on “MORE” to see if he had already said my piece. ALL my words were lost. This review is therefore totally off topic (completely unlike me, who is usually so on topic…. 😉

Kites Trust have great people doing a great job in an area fraught with complication, neglect and contempt.

They say it takes 17 years to make a positive change and 24 years to change a negative. Just bloody well hope they can keep happily chipping away at the bricks and mortar that make up the fortress of addiction and mental health thinking in our rather illogic society.

Even staunch capitalists will work out that a country (or area of “economic units”) should be rated on it’s populations happiness and not on Gross Domestic Product stats.

In the end they only understand economy. Don’t worry about communities, quality of life and suffering. Explain to the capitalists how the economy will improve with a bunch of happy economic units floating around.

Kites may work for the individual and look after their requirements in so many levels… Sure.

They also produce high end reports, analysis and recommendations to the sectors Government agencies and power brokers.

People have said it takes 17 years to make a positive change and 24 to change a negative. But then I found a report written for Government about Drug Addiction recovery. It suggested that rehab and residential treatment centres must be run collaboratively between “learning universities, government hospitals, mental health agencies . etc etc…. and OCCUPATIONAL THERAPISTS”.

A great report. A report that I typed a few paragraphs verbatim into the internet. The recommendations got excellent responses from a few Californians, Canadians and Dutch people looking at New Zealand as though we are world leaders.

Unfortunately this report was published in 1971. Exactly 41 years before I typed it in and sent a photocopy to the minister in charge.

17 years to make a positive. 24 years to stop a negative. That’s 41 years.

The term “Occupational Deprivation” could be used to replace “Disassociation / Dislocation [from society].” These roots of our societies mental illness and addiction exponential growth have only come into mainstream thinking in the last decade.

Yet here is a report demanding a holistic approach inclusive of getting individuals to socialise and participate in positive community endeavour. In 1971.


The Canadians, Dutch and Californian drug and penal system people were disappointed when finding out the report was not recent and not actioned.

Disappointed, but not the slightest surprised. “Rolling eyes” was a common email theme for a while 😉

You know why we should all thank Kites?

** Not for the help with pointing out the correct text books.
** Not for allowing the use of their phones, borrowing pens or using their internet.
** Not for collecting data, processing, analysing, writing recommendations and presenting to international conferences or local groups.
** Not for sharing their knowledge.
** Not for training and educating the filthy masses that inhabit middle and upper management and doing likewise, albiet in with a slightly different hat, for the mass vast potential that I can only term service “users”.
** Not even for setting up peer support groups, buddies services, job placement programmes…
** Not for being great people doing a great job in a complicated mess of a system.

We should be thanking them for ignoring all the crap – all the white noise.
We should be thankful that they believe in something strongly enough to just bloody well do it.

— Yes, this was me trying to be positive. It was 5am. And it was FATHERS DAY. I was due to be woken up by my daughter carrying in surprise breakfast in bed (it turned out to be chocolates) in less than a few hours. 

Maybe there is need to edit (or at least proof read) my own work.

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