A SERVICE which provides support for over 16s who have been affected by childhood trauma and adverse experiences is to be rolled out into Cowdenbeath.

LinkLiving's Better than Well Service was originally piloted in the Kirkcaldy area, however, after the allocation of additional Scottish Government funding, is now being extended.

The organisation is currently running in Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy and Levenmouth and it has chosen to add its services to Cowdenbeath – and Dunfermline – because it wants to target areas with the highest population.

Sarah Smith, Director of LinkLiving, was pleased to be offering the service to more areas.

“We recognise trauma as a broad range of traumatic, abusive and neglectful experiences that can be highly threatening and lead to feelings of fear and helplessness," she said.

“We hope by expanding our Better than Well service, we will be able to help more people recognise and understand the symptoms of trauma, equipping them with skills to positively manage its negative impacts and helping them achieve a better quality of life.

“So far, we have worked with more than 150 people to help them manage the impact trauma has had on their lives. We have also commissioned an evaluation report, due in July 2019, to examine the outcomes people have experienced as a result of working with the service.”

Better Than Well, which is funded by the Scottish Government and Fife Health and Social Care Partnership, specialises in helping people living in Fife who have found it difficult to engage with other services.

The service also runs seminars and learning events to increase awareness of the impact of childhood trauma and to encourage people to get involved with its work.

People who access the service receive eight one-to-one sessions with a self-help coach while they learn useful coping strategies for managing the effects of trauma.

The self-help coaches can work with participants to access new opportunities and additional services.

One service user said the support received had been invaluable.

“I cannot think of one area of my life that hasn’t been improved," they said. "The biggest being able to engage better with other services and feeling able to deal with things from an improved perspective."

Another added: “It helped me manage my anxiety and stress better. I've learned this is helping me more than medication. I've had more out of eight sessions with my coach than 14 years on medication because I see changes happening in my life now, whereas before everything was the same and there was no escape.”