Northern Ireland Personality Disorder Conference


Northern Ireland Personality Disorder Conference Find out more Donate

Around 1 in 16 people worldwide have a diagnosis of Personality Disorder. It’s a serious diagnosis, with significant implications. Those who receive it are likely to experience emotional and cognitive difficulties, and have significantly lower life expectancies, on average. For those with this diagnosis, it is often a struggle to access effective support and therapy. However, there is hope. New therapies are being developed and improved upon, while awareness of personality disorder – and how to effectively help those with the diagnosis – is growing within our public services.

Get your tickets for the Northern Ireland Personality Disorder Conference

On 21 June, the Northern Ireland Personality Disorder Network will host a major conference on Personality Disorder. The conference will be chaired by Nick Garbutt and held within the impressive surroundings of the La Mon Hotel. The conference offers an unrivalled opportunity to improve the experience of those living with a diagnosis of personality disorder. Some 200 delegates are expected from across Northern Ireland and beyond, as well as an impressive line-up of speakers. By bringing healthcare professionals, public servants, personality disorder survivors and their families, and the third sector together under one roof, we expect a productive discussion about this vital issue.

Book your tickets now.

Conference Programme


Registration and Networking



Chair’s welcome and introductions

Nick Garbutt - Scope NI Editor

Session 1 - Emerging Best Practice in the Treatment of Personality Disorder


Keynote Address - Personality Disorder: A diagnosis for inclusion

Sean Holland - Chief Social Work Officer, Department of Health confirmed


Shining a Light on Personality Disorder: Helping public services work with those with a diagnosis


Session delivered by live presentation and via video-link

Dr Alex Stirzaker - Editor, Consensus Statement confirmed


Sue Sibbald - Peer Specialist, Co Chair, Personality Disorder Consensus Group confirmed


Rt Hon Norman Lamb MP - Co Chair, Personality Disorder Consensus Group confirmed


Enabling Environments

Dr Rex Haigh - Clinical Psychologist, NHS confirmed


Questions and Answers / Panel Discussion

Sean Holland - DOH

Dr Alex Stirzaker - Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership

Dr Rex Haigh - NHS England



Session 2 - The Human Cost of Personality Disorder


Living with Personality Disorder: A survivor’s perspective

Jemimah Armstrong - Individual with Lived Experience confirmed


Steven Millar - Peer Support Worker, Belfast Health and Social Care Board confirmed


The NI Perspective: Where are we now?


Dr Iain McDougall – Consultant Psychiatrist, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust confirmed


Don Bradley – Assistant Director, Mental Health, South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust invited


Questions and Answers / Panel Discussion

Jemimah Armstrong

Steven Millar - BHSCT

Dr Iain McDougall - BHSCT

Don Bradley - SEHSCT


Networking Break - Lunch Served


Lunch and Breakout Sessions


Tackling stigma – changing perceptions about Personality Disorder?

Session convener: Edward Gorringe - Chief Executive Officer, MindWise confirmed


How can the justice system produce better outcomes in its dealings with Personality Disorder sufferers?

Session convener: Inspector Mark Cavanagh – PSNI confirmed


Treatment therapy showcase – methods used to treat Personality Disorder in their area?

Session convener: HSC NI Representative confirmed


The Service User Perspective

Session Convenor: Harm-Ed confirmed


The Family and Carers Perspective

Session Convenor: CAUSE confirmed


Breakout Sessions End


Session 3 - Resolutions and Next Steps


Reportage from Breakout Sessions

Edward Gorringe - Mindwise

Inspector Mark Cavanage - PSNI






Questions and Answers / Panel Discussion

Edward Gorringe - Mindwise

Inspector Mark Cavanage - PSNI





Reflections on the conference proceedings: creating a policy framework that ensures better outcomes for those with Personality Disorders

Chris Matthews – Director of Mental Health, Disability and Older People invited


Chairman’s Closing Remarks

Nick Garbutt


Conference Ends



NIPDN is a partnership of a number of organisations, comprising both public and third sector bodies, working within the field of Personality Disorder in Northern Ireland. The Network is organising the conference, to realise the following outcomes:
About the Northern Ireland Personality Disorder Network

  • To increase awareness and understanding of personality disorders amongst service users, carers, practitioners, commissioners and policy makers
  • To provide a platform to promote the voice of people with lived experience through involvement at all levels
  • To promote, share and introduce best practice in the treatment of personality disorders
  • To secure commitment for increased funding of Personality Disorder services in Northern Ireland.

The Network is comprised of the following members:

Belfast Health and Social Care Trust | CAUSE | Health and Social Care Board | Inspire | MindWise | Northern Health and Social Care Trust | People with Direct Experience of Personality Disorder | Praxis | Royal College of Psychiatrists | South-Eastern Health and Social Care Trust | Southern Health and Social Care Trust | Western Health and Social Care Trust


Fringe event- Understanding And Responding to Self Harm, delivered by Harm-Ed

MindWise are very excited to host a NI Personality Disorder Conference Fringe event namely ‘Understanding and Responding to Self-Harm’ delivered by Harm-ed. Harm-ed ( is a user-led, not-for-profit organisation specialising in offering specialist, bespoke training courses on the issue of Self-Harm, Suicide and Mental Health Awareness.

This one day learning and development course will provide delegates with:

  • An appreciation of the importance of experiential knowledge in training around self-harm
  • An understanding of self-harm including definition, common experiences and functions.
  • An awareness of different approaches when responding to self-harm
  • An acknowledgement of the relationship between BPD and self-harm.

Who is it for?

The programme is suitable for any service/staff who work with people who self-harm.

‘The course gave me insight and understanding and was simply excellent – very many thanks to you both’ Consultant Psychiatrist, Belfast, Sept 17

‘I have been on many NHS courses over my long career and I have to say this course ranked as one of the best I’ve ever attended’ Chartered Physiotherapist. Jan. 17

Structure of the programme

The Programme will be delivered face to face and the course is designed to be interactive and participatory. Course timings are 9.30 am – 4 pm and refreshments are included.


The Cost of this Programme is £80 per head.


The Programme will be facilitated by Nicole Devlin: a BSc Hons Psychology student at Queen’s university. Nicole has had an extensive history of self-harm, borderline personality disorder, amongst long term psychiatric inpatient treatment. Nicole uses her experiences to give insight into the subject areas.

Terri Shaw: MA, BSc Hons, RGN, PGCE. Founding Director of Harm-ed and specialist trainer on self-harm, professional background of working as a staff nurse in A&E and personal experience around caring for someone who self-harms.

Dates and location

Workshop date:-

Friday 22nd June, 2018

Central location, just off Malone Road with easy access to Outer Ring and M1/M2

Pinewood House

46 Newforge Lane

Belfast, BT9 5NW


For more Information, please contact Harm-ed to request a booking form at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Places will be allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis and number of places are limited so it is recommended that you apply as soon as possible.


This web site would like to use cookies to store information on your computer, to improve our website. Cookies used for the essential operation of the site have already been set.

To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.


EU Cookie Directive Module Information