This morning I drove to Utrecht for an open meeting of the "Vakvereniging voor Ervaringswerkers" (VvE), an association / union for people who are working with their experience in the mental health care. I got the invitation and was curious enough to go! :-)
It was an interesting meeting. Unfortunately the guest speaker had become ill and gone home. That's a pity! I learned a lot about the VvE though: the goals, the collaboration with other groups, the finances, etc. It didn't really apply to my personal situation, because I work as a volunteer. Voluntary experience workers are welcome to join, but for the VvE the emphasis is on experience workers with a paid job. A uniform job description and rules for payment are important goals. Furthermore they support research in the field of working with experience, aim for more cooperation (together we're stronger) and special education opportunities.
Because part of the agenda was off, we were ready around 2pm, so I could drive home without a lot of traffic jams. It was worth the time to go; I don't think I'll go another time though. I'll write a report about the meeting for the newsletter of the experience workers pool I'm part of.