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Innovative children and young people's services showcased

​Staff from Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) who are finding effective ways to help children and young people have showcased some of their most innovative services during a visit by officials from NHS England.

Kathryn Pugh, Programme Manager, and Project Manager Polly Ashmore, who both work in Children and Young People’s Mental Health, visited Norfolk last Friday (25 November) to meet senior staff and hear more about some of the work taking place at the Trust.

The duo began their visit by hearing more about the way NSFT and Norfolk County Council are working together to provide joined-up services, such as Compass Outreach, which supports ‘looked after’ children and those at risk of being taken into care.

Ms Pugh then visited 80, St Stephens in Norwich, to hear more about the Children, Families and Young People’s Services, which is one of only two across the country to cater for people up to the age of 25. This prevents them from having to make a potentially difficult transition to adult services at the age of 18.

In addition, Ms Pugh heard more about the work the Trust is doing to plan for future demand, as well as a current project to develop new care pathways for young people.

Ms Ashmore visited the Compass Outreach Service, which is run in partnership with The Benjamin Foundation and the council and finds innovative ways to support families to help them remain together and avoid the child being taken into care. She also went to the Compass School in Lingwood, which is run by the Engage Trust in partnership with NSFT.

Andy Goff, Improvement and Development Manager with NSFT, said: “We were delighted to hear that Kathryn and Polly were keen to visit Norfolk and find out more about some of the innovative work we are doing with children and young people.

“The day gave us an opportunity to showcase some of our services which are making the biggest difference to the lives of young people and their families. We hope that both Kathryn and Polly found the day useful and will be able to share some of the best practice we have developed here at NSFT elsewhere.”

Chris Butwright, Head of Joint Commissioning with Norfolk County Council’s Children's Services, said: “It was a very welcome opportunity to meet with the national leads and share our collaborative and innovative work which is supporting and making a difference for vulnerable children and families in Norfolk.”

The visit comes just after two youth services were named as finalists for prestigious awards. Compass Outreach was shortlisted for a Health Service Journal Award in the “improved partnerships between health and local government” category, while the Central Norfolk Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders Service was shortlisted for team outstanding clinical achievement in the East of England Leadership Recognition Awards.