PWP Programme - Host Organisations
Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner (PWP) Training Course – Host Organisation
Mind HK is pleased to announce its Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner (PWP) training programme. It is a continuation of Mind HK’s existing youth wellbeing practitioner programme to extend early mental health support to adults. We will be training a new cohort of practitioners to deliver Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)-based, low intensity interventions to individuals experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems (including depression and anxiety). These practitioners will be placed at host organisations to provide service to adults in need.
We are now inviting interested organisations to sign up and become a host organisation for these practitioners to provide mental health support to your community.
Please email [email protected] if you have any enquiries about the programme.
Cost to host organisations: FREE
Programme placement date: July 2023 – March 2024
Benefits of becoming an host organisation:
- Free of charge mental health support for host organisations and their clients. Practitioners training and supervision is fully funded by our programme sponsors.
- Implement early intervention to prevent mental health problems and emotional distress from worsening.
- Expand your service or reduce your service waiting time by providing cost-efficient low-intensity therapies for adults with mild to moderate depression and anxiety.
- Be part of a pioneering initiative to improve mental health through increasing access to psychological interventions, and reducing the queue for the public healthcare system in Hong Kong.
- Post-placement: host organisations may choose to continue with the PWP programme and employ PWPs as staff members to provide ongoing mental health support.
Organisational eligibility criteria:
- Service setting working with adults aged 18 or above.
- Is committed to make proper referrals with respective to the preset screening criteria.
- Has a minimum of 25 adults to receive the intervention who are screened suitable for the intervention. Should organisations have less than 25 participating adults to receive support, organisations can consider the split placement option, whereby organisations will share a practitioner);
- Be able to provide a safe space for the trainee practitioner to conduct sessions;
- Have an existing group of professional staff (e.g. qualified psychologist, social worker, or counsellor) to provide ad-hoc crisis support (if any), and step-down or step-up referral if needed/ suitable
- Be able to demonstrate organisational risk assessment and management protocols that provide adequate support for adults experiencing mental health problems and those working with them.
The practitioner training fees have been fully funded by the programme’s sponsors: the Kadoorie Charitable Foundation and Hemera Foundation. These practitioners are then placed free of charge at host organisations to support adults aged 18 or above.
For further information on this programme, please visit our FAQ section of this page.
Should you have any questions or interested in becoming a host organisation, please email the PWP team at [email protected] .
What is the Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner (PWP) Programme?
The training course aims to provide trainees with a solid understanding of low intensity psychological interventions for adults with mild to moderate depression and anxiety. It hopes to increase access to mental health care and support for adults (aged 18 or above) in Hong Kong, through training individuals to deliver low-intensity, manualised and guided self-help interventions based upon Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).
This training is based on a model similar to the UK’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT), a stepped care model designed to target individuals experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems, to help them manage their emotions.
The pilot training course will train the first cohort of well-being practitioners to deliver interventions to adults experiencing mild to moderate mental health issues.
What is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)?
It is a form of psychological therapy derived from the principles of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and mindfulness, focusing on promoting the acceptance of painful thoughts and feelings in service of living a meaningful life.
ACT skills encourage people to learn how to accept unpleasant thoughts and feelings, enabling them to focus on important goals and activities in their lives. There is increasing evidence for the effectiveness of ACT in managing a wide range of psychological difficulties.
What is manualised intervention?
Manualised interventions clearly list out steps in the intervention, allowing practitioners to easily follow them to provide therapy. Standardised interventions are particularly important for providing effective, low intensity interventions.
Practitioners work through a standardised, step-by-step treatment procedure with each client, and depending on the clients needs, they will guide them through different concepts and exercises in the modules.
Although the intervention procedure is mostly standardised, practitioners will work flexibly with clients to address individual presenting problems and unique characteristics.
What is Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT)?
IAPT is a programme in the United Kingdom, started by the National Health Service (NHS) in 2008, to increase access to evidence-based therapies for anxiety and depression. The programme trained new practitioners in delivering low intensity interventions, to increase the available resource for individuals experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems.
The aim of the intervention is to provide early intervention before mental health problems worsen, in turn, helping to reduce the burden on the existing mental health services.
Where are the placements conducted?
Trainees will undergo the 9-month placement in community settings that are working with adults, for example: corporates, universities, community organisations, or clinics.
Will PWP Trainees from NGO backgrounds be able to conduct their placement at their existing organisation?
Yes. PWP Trainees will be able to conduct their placements at their employment organisations providing their organisations are participating in the programme and are supportive of this initiative. Please discuss this with team members from Mind HK to confirm this arrangement.
Independent PWP Trainees without association to any organisations will be assigned to host organisations by Mind HK.
How will trainees be assessed?
Trainees will undergo an assessment at the end of the initial teaching block. They will lead a practice session with a trainer to assess their skills and knowledge. The session will be recorded and reviewed by two assessors to verify that they have reached the required standard to commence their placements.
Supervisors will monitor trainees’ development throughout the placement to ensure that they are meeting the required level of competency to pass the training course at the end of the placement.
Who will the trainees be providing the service to?
Adults aged 18+ experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems and emotional distress.
Can you give me an example of the sort of person PWP would be working with as a trainee?
Trainees will work with adults experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems and emotional distress including, but not limited to, depression, generalised anxiety and low self esteem.
Due to there not being any current data available on the effectiveness of this intervention for individuals with more severe or complex mental health problems, this programme is therefore not recommended for individuals with schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder.
Why was the programme developed?
Hong Kong’s existing mental health service is experiencing a lot of strain with long waiting times and being under-resourced, resulting in individuals with mild to moderate mental health problems unable to receive support sooner. The programme was developed with the aim of training additional therapists to deliver early, evidence-based intervention, to prevent mental health problems from worsening.