Naomi Farrow, People Participation Lead, North Norfolk and Norwich
Mum-of-three Naomi Farrow has brought a wealth of experience to her role as People Participation Lead for North Norfolk and Norwich.
She began championing the rights of service users after experiencing mental health problems following the birth of her twins and set up Get Me Out The Four Walls charity to combat isolation in new mums, before going on to become a peer support worker at the Kingfisher Mother and Baby Unit.
Naomi has used many of the Trust's services, having first received treatment for severe post-natal depression before more recently spending time as an inpatient following a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. She said: "This role was the perfect opportunity to use my ideas and experiences to help improve the services the Trust provides. It's also vitally important to represent the views of the patient; if we were in retail or running a business, we'd be talking to our customers about what they want – I don't see why it should be any different in the public sector."
She is keen to use her experiences to positively influence change, while working alongside fellow PPLs to make sure staff, service users and carers are involved in all aspects of the Trust's work.
Naomi added: "I've had first-hand experience of nearly all of the Trust's adult acute services, most recently during an impatient admission in March 2019. That gave me a really important insight into life from the service user's perspective, and will be really useful as the PPL role continues to develop.
"Engaging with staff will also be really important as they are the ones on the frontline. I am speaking to them about what they feel needs to change. They are the experts, and we need to make sure we are giving them every opportunity to share their views.
"This role gives us a really exciting opportunity to be proactive and listen to the people who know our services the best, so that we can make the right changes to impact positively on their lives."