What’s your name and where do you come from?
I’m Derek Read and I’m originally from the Wirral, near Liverpool. I came to Glasgow nearly 30 years ago to do my social work post-grad and I’ve been here ever since.
Why are you interested in mental wellbeing?
I’ve had periods of mental ill health throughout my life and more recently I had to give up social work because of my health. I went back part time, but I found it too difficult. Now I do peer support work and talk about my lived experience of mental ill health. We get good feedback- people tell us that hearing someone else’s story can make a real difference. Often peers can teach more than professionals.
What can we expect from you?
Mostly poetry, but I’m interested in all forms of writing as a therapeutic tool. I think people with mental health problems need to be heard and know their own experience best.
What makes you angry?
Injustice: prejudice, narrow-mindedness.
What makes you feel good?
Music, poetry, being with friends and performing poetry. Travelling and seeing new places. I want to see more of the world while we still can.
We’re always looking for new community correspondents, find out more about getting involved here.