Course Profile

Course Profile: Creative Group Work in Mental Health
& Substance Use Services
(1-2 Days)
Group work and particularly creative group work can serve as an invaluable resource; however used clumsily or naively it can potentially be a damaging experience, not only for group members, but also for the facilitators. This course aims to help participants develop their understanding of group dynamics, creative ways of developing group participation and the use of a variety of creative mediums to help enrich service users' lives.
The course 'borrows' information and skills from a range of sources, including Group counselling, O.T, Art and Drama Therapies.
The course supports the Social Care Commitment and is set in the context of The Care Act 2014 (promoting health and wellbeing).
The course provides some knowledge for
NHS KSF:  Core 1.3, HWB4.2, G1.2,
QCF: HSC036, 31, 3004, 3008, 3010


The course is designed for workers providing support for people with Mental Health and/or substance/alcohol use in diverse roles and settings.
The course will help organisations to meet the CQC Fundamental Standards
Learning outcomes

By the end of the course learners should understand:

  • What is meant by a 'group' and 'group work'
  • The advantages, disadvantages and challenges of working with a group rather than working 1-1
  • An introduction to group dynamics
  • The roles that people tend to play within groups
  • The particular types of groups that are suitable in a social support setting; 'safety' issues
  • The skills required for facilitating these types of groups
  • Deciding on a group or individual activity-Staff or User led?
  • The Planning stage (incl. Consultation and policy)
         -The proposed Group Structure e.g. timing           -The frequency of proposed meetings
         -Facilitation details e.g. co-facilitation           -The objectives-what is the group for?
         -Membership requirements           -Closed or open?
         -The group contract           -Other boundary issues e.g. confidentiality
         -The physical environment           -Materials that will be required
         -Team and external support           -Health and safety issues
         -Evaluating activities           -Supervision and consultation etc.
  • Implementation: Opening groups, Closing groups, Support, Maintaining boundaries, Empowerment strategies, Feedback, Record keeping, ongoing review etc.
  • Evaluation: Different methods
Training methods utilised include: Discussion, PowerPoint, Large group work, Small group work, Practical exercises, Handouts, Tutor presentations