Here and Now
A Brief CV
I was born in Dundee Scotland in 1958. As a boy my wish was to become a priest however this changed when I became subject to sexual abuse within the church from the age of ten. I left Scotland at the age seventeen and joined the British Army and was a member of the Royal Army Pay Corps. Whilst a soldier I completed a degree in business administration and accountancy. After leaving the armed forces I went to work in the City of London for a company called Carrington Morada in their finance department. After an accident playing rugby I returned to work and almost immediately started to hear voices. This got worse over the next three months and eventually I was sectioned in 1982 and diagnosed as schizophrenic. For ten years I was in and out of psychiatric hospitals spending over six years as an in-patient.
In 1991 I started to attend the newly formed Manchester Hearing Voices Network where I started the process of recovery. My recovery was rooted in the work of Marius Romme and Sandra Escher and their understanding that voices and indeed psychosis were normal responses to abnormal situations. My life really began in 1991 through the exploration of my voices.
Since 1991 I have undertaken a number of life changing tasks and these have allowed me to develop much of my thinking around mental health in general and recovery in particular. This has included the following.
1991-1994 National coordinator Hearing Voices Network where I had the responsibility for the development of the Hearing Voices Network in the UK.
1992-1993 Member of the National Executive of Survivors Speak Out.
1994-1999 Independent Trainer and consultant in this time I developed a number of training days including working with voices, working to recovery and working with psychosis. I also developed a one-week training course called Psychosis mapping the maze. I also developed recovery aids including the Choice Opportunities People & Self (COPS) programme. I worked for a diverse number of organisations including Health, Social services, Voluntary sector organisations and private sector companies.
1996-1999 Part time service development worker with Community Integrated Care. In this role I worked as part of a team with the responsibility of developing new service models of care. It was during this time that the first blueprint for a psychosis unit was developed something I later developed as part of Keepwell.
1999 - August 2002 Director of Keepwell Limited. In this position my main responsibility was the development of recovery orientated training packages and service provision. I was one of the founders of Keepwell Limited Keepwell was the amalgamation of three organisations these were Action Consultancy and Training, Handsell Publishing & Strange fish Conferences. Prior to the merger I was the sole owner of Action Consultancy & Training and one of two partners in Handsell Publishing. On the 25th of August 2002 Keepwell went into voluntary liquidation.
September 2002-Present Independent trainer and consultant. I am currently working with my wife in a partnership doing training and consultancy work in mental health the focus of which is the further development of recovery based services.
Throughout the last ten years I have been involved in recovery work either in service development or in training professionals, users, carers and the general public.
Is The Writing on the Asylum Wall (Power to Partnership) Ron Coleman
Politics of the Madhouse Ron Coleman
Recovery an Alien Concept Ron Coleman
Working with Voices Ron Coleman and Mike Smith
Working to Recovery Ron Coleman, Paul Baker and Karen Taylor
Psychiatric First Aid in Psychosis Mike Smith, Ron Coleman and John Good
This is Madness Edited By Calizie Dunn
The Construction of Psychiatric Authority Edited by Phil Barker
Working for Inclusion Edited by Peter Bates
Position Paper on Recovery Paul Carling, Peirs Allot, Ron Coleman & Mike Smith
Position Paper On employment Ron Coleman & Paul Baker
Training off the Rails Ron Coleman
Ron discovering an Italian translation of ‘Recovery an Alien Concept’ in a bookshop in Rome. It will be reprinted in Italy in July. Ron is currently rewriting the British edition.
Ron and Professor Sashi Sashdhuran
Ron during a visit to Trento, Italy