Young people ‘take over’ mental health trust meeting to raise awareness of participation | News and events

Young people ‘take over’ mental health trust meeting to raise awareness of participation

Young people from the Suffolk mental health participation group, Particip8, led a Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) staff meeting to share their experiences to help improve the services offered by the Trust.

Five young people from the Particip8 group spoke with staff from the Suffolk Children, Families and Young People (CYFP) service, whilst audio recordings from another four were played, and further feedback from other young service users was shared.

More than 40 staff attended the meeting, eager to learn from the experiences shared. The meeting was recorded and will be shared with other staff responsible for providing care to young people.

Particip8 members also shared how they are linking up with partner organisations to do the same ‘takeover’ to further raise awareness and improve the experiences of young people in Suffolk who need support to improve their mental health.

NSFT’s Suffolk CFYP service benefits from three dedicated young people participation champions, a role that was co-produced with Particip8 to continue to support participation. These champions Grace, Molly and Donna shared what they had achieved in their role.

The group presented successes already achieved by participation, including artwork, working with local police and schools, as well as a suicide prevention project with great feedback from service users.

Donna Wilson, one of the young people participation champions: “Thank you to all the staff who have made us feel really welcome, it is important for us to have a voice and actually feel like our input is really welcome.”

“We’ve also recently been invited to speak at CAMHS [Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services] governance meetings. There is still loads to do but it’s a really exciting time for participation.”

People Participation Lead at NSFT, Sophie Davies said: “This meeting has been an opportunity to celebrate the success of participation. Our Suffolk young people’s service has worked with more than 150 young people to develop the mental health care offered to young people”

“This meeting with Particip8 was really well-received by staff and hopefully will encourage more involvement with participation. It is vital we listen to these young people as they are the voice of experience and have so many useful ideas for how we can provide better care.”

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