Vince Cable delivers speech on adult education and mental health link

Business secretary Vince Cable will today (11th March) be delivering the keynote speech at The Mental Health and Work conference in which he will be emphasising the importance of further educational opportunities for people with mental health issues.

On the evening of the speech, he has talked about his mother’s postnatal depression and her recoverywhich he has attributed to her learning experience at an adult education college. Cable said he had long appreciated the practical value of further education colleges – his father taught the skills of the building trade in one – but the memory of his mother’s route out of mental illness had inspired him to invite colleges to help others.

NIACE Cymru, who are strong advocates for the links and benefits that exist between lifelong learning and health and wellbeing, are keen to offer our support for these priorities which have seen an increase in funding for mental health for 2015/16.

In January 2015, NIACE Cymru ran ‘Learning for your Health’, a collaborative seminar with The Bevan Foundation. The seminar explored how we can reduce the demand on our Health Services by utilising adult learning to improve people’s health. NIACE Cymru were delighted to have Mark Drakeford AM, Minister for Health and social services as a guest and speaker at their first seminar of 2015. You can download all documentation from this conference here.

Additionally, NIACE Cymru and the Welsh NHS Confederation have recently released ‘From Rhetoric to Reality: NHS Wales in 10 years’ time – Health & Education’; a publication which highlights the impact that education has on health and wellbeing.

The briefing, which is the third in the Welsh Confederation’s ‘From Rhetoric to Reality’ series, contains a number of case studies illustrating how the provision of educational services can be hugely beneficial to people as well as the NHS as a whole.