by Alyse Price-Tobler (mcap)

                                      SEMPI Social Communication Model©            

              © 2018 Alyse Price-Tobler () Music by Tania Rose
               ABN 53160 956 356              


Why I created the SEMPI Social Communication Model

Posted on November 9, 2017 at 4:15 AM

Hi, and thankyou for coming to my website to spend your precious time reading my blog.


I wanted to say something about one of the main reasons for designing the SEMPI model. Throughout my many years as a community worker, the men and women who have been experiencing homelessness, have been among the people who have most touched my heart.


I cannot imagine, as much as I try, to understand what it must be like to experience unmanaged mental health issues, ongoing painful and debilitating physical symptoms, and not having anywhere safe to live. Just typing this is bringing up a lot of emotion for me. Over the years, I have worked with, and walked with, many many people experiencing this way of life. My frustration with the lack of housing and good mental health care has only deepened over time and after I finished my research at the Exodus Foundation and the absolutely amazing Bill crews and his dedicated staff, it was clear to me that I had to get the model that I had already been working on for some time, out there in the world.


I started to write SEMPI after a long painful operation. During my time in hospital, I found myself needing to speak to someone about what was happening to me both mentally and physically, while I was in recovery. To my surprise, there was no one on staff who were able to fill this need for me. I asked if there was a counsellor on staff, or perhaps a Nun or Brother from a local order who came through. There was nothing. When I found myself crying and trying to process the huge event that I had just been through, I was met with staff who were showing signs of concern and worry for me about my mental health, and obvious frustration at my putting them out of their routine with my 'upsetness'. At one point, the Nurse Unit Manager was called in, along with two other nurses, who questioned me about why I was really upset and if I was suicidal. I actually didn't think I was crying more than anyone else would have done in my position at the time and didn't really warrant being asked if I was suicidel.  Actually, I silently cried three times in four days, but not weeping and deep crying. I couldn't believe that my crying and asking if someone could come and talk to me had evoked this response. I knew instantly that I was not going to get any help from the nursing staff and that no one else was coming to speak to me about what I was going through around my adjustment after my operation, at anytime soon. I experienced first hand stigma from staff who were working in a large institution and questioning my mental health because I was crying after a six hour operation. I had to do something. I wondered how people who did have serious mental health issues were treated in these settings. Then I wondered about what it must be like for men and women who were homeless as well and how they are treated. I wanted to write a model that  everyone could learn, so that the staff would no longer be scared of anyone showing any emotion and or who were taking up their time. I imagined lay people coming in to hospitals and teaching people the SEMPI language, while settling them down and giving them a voice. 




This was the moment that I started to design a model for anyone needing to speak to someone and feel heard when they are going through a difficult time. I decided to write a model that was easy to pick up, was altruistic, needed to be able to be along the same lines as the 'pay it forward', could be used by children and adults, as well as anyone in those two categories that have a disability or mental health issue.


My model needed to be used by basically everybody.


The most important factor was that it needed to be FREE so that it can get out to the people who need it the most.


It can be used from anyone aged from three to 110, from any profession, seven days per week.

It needed to reduce loneliness and isloation.


This is my passion. This is my biggest project. This is for the homeless men and women that have taught me and trusted me. This is for my children and the coming generations, so that they do not experience the levels of stigma around mental health that are currently ingrained in our society. Children are our future. Children who have a voice and are taught to use it are empowered little people who grow up to be powerful emotionally intelligent adults. My SEMPI model attempts to do this.

Thank you for reading, Alyse :)

#homeless, #women, #public, #self-esteem, #stigma, #empathy, #mentalhealth #hospital #childmentalhealth #adultmentalhealth

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