Service User Network

The Service User Network (SUN) is a place for people to connect with each other and use their experiences to influence and shape service developments at the Trust. The group meets monthly and SUN members can get involved in a range of projects that can help develop better mental health or learning disability services at LYPFT. SUN members are people with lived experience of using mental health or learning disability services or those who care about someone who does.

Latest news events and blogs

Join the SUN and get involved!three people holding hands together

The SUN brings people with lived experience together to express their views, share their experiences, explore what works well in our Trust and provide valuable feedback to help develop our services. LYPFT can learn from your lived experience through you getting involved in a wide range of projects. For example, you can:

    • Join a recruitment panel for staff.
    • Work with others to co design and implement new services.
    • Create information for service users, relatives and carers.
    • Co design and co deliver practice development sessions for staff.

To learn more about our current projects and to get involved email the Patient and Carer Experience team or attend the next SUN meeting on Wednesday, 5th June  from 1pm until 2:30pm at The Vinery Centre, 20 Vinery Terrace, Leeds, LS9 9LU.

Take a look at our latest SUN bulletin which features many projects SUN members took part in in 2022 – 2023. You can find it in our ‘Downloads’.

You can be involved as much or as little as you want, it’s always up to you.

Here is information about one of our current projects: 

Reducing the use of restrictive practices at LYPFT

Restrictive practices are best explained as ‘making someone do something they don’t want to do or stopping them doing something they want to do’ (Skills for Care 2014). People with lived experience of restrictive practice or their friends, relatives or carers are developing information about restrictive practice and bringing more lived experience into staff training. The friendly and supportive group meets monthly online and occasionally face to face. New members are always welcome to join the group.

Email the Patient Experience Team to find our more

Lived experience partners Jackie, Tessa and Andrew have been group members since the start.
Jackie says

“I feel really heard in the group, and it feels like we have a real influence.”

Tessa says

“It’s been a great experience so far.”

and Andrew says

“The group is really diverse and members are mainly service users or carers. It’s a really caring group and we are passionate about making change”.

Emma Oldham Fox, LYPFT’s Professional Practice Lead for Reducing Restrictive Practice said

“It is so important to listen to the experiences of service users and carers. I work to create the right organisational culture to reduce the use of restrictive practice, and this cannot be done without the collaboration with service users and carers.”


What is the SUN?

The SUN’s main focus is on improving LYPFT’s mental health and learning disability services. SUN brings people together to express their views, share their experiences, explore what works well in our Trust and provide valuable feedback to help develop our services. SUN helps to empower and inspire people through getting involved, sharing their views and giving the opportunity to have their voice heard. This can help with personal recovery and positive health and wellbeing.

Members of staff are also very welcome to attend SUN meetings. The SUN Group is co-chaired by facilitators with lived experience and supported by the Trust’s Patient and Carer Experience Team

Why should I get involved?

Connect, be active, give, keep learning, take noticeYour experiences and feedback can make a difference! Getting involved will:

  • help you to understand why things happen in a certain way
  • help you gain new skills
  • increase your confidence
  • help you to speak out on behalf of others without a voice
  • support you on your journey to recovery and maintain your wellbeing
  • help you connect with other people
  • enable the Trust to learn from your experiences
What happens at the network meetings?

There is a SUN meeting on the first Wednesday of every month between 1pm-2.30pm. It’s a friendly meeting and everyone is welcome to attend. The meetings take place either face to face or online.

There is usually a guest speaker, and news and updates about involvement opportunities with different services at LYPFT or at other groups in Leeds. SUN members can also bring their ideas or concerns about any Trust service to the SUN meeting. They can discuss how to work together with staff and SUN members, what the next steps may be and get regular feedback.

We have a SUN mailing list to let people know about involvement opportunities at LYPFT. There are many different ways you can be involved and you can do as much or as little as you want to. This could be:

  • giving your views
  • being part of a project group
  • coming to a SUN event
  • filling in a survey
  • being on a recruitment panel
  • taking part in a workshop or discussion
  • helping to plan or deliver staff practice development
  • co-chairing a group.

To join our mailing list, please email the Patient Experience Team or call 0113 855 6840.

How else can I use my lived experience?

There are other ways to get involved at the Trust and use your lived experience.

Expenses and Payments

LYPFT values the time people give to being involved with our Trust. Each activity you take part in will be at one of three levels. We will tell you which level it is before you decide to take part.

Level A – No involvement payment and no repayment of ‘out of pocket’ expenses.

Level B – Repayment of travel and out of pocket expenses.

Level C – An involvement payment is offered along with repayment of travel and out of pocket expenses.

Please see the attached Summary of Payment leaflet for more details