A team that offers workshops to parents whose children have been assessed by mental health services has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award.
The child and adolescent mental health service nurses from Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust are finalists in the Mental Health category of the RCNi Nurse Awards 2017, the profession’s top accolade for nursing excellence.
The award, sponsored by journal Mental Health Practice, is for nurses whose innovative approach has inspired service users and colleagues and created positive outcomes in the lives of the people they care for.
The team will find out whether it has won at a ceremony in the Westminster Park Plaza hotel, London, on May 5. The RCN Nurse of the Year 2017, selected from all the category winners, will be announced on the night.
The team has developed and implemented a five-week programme of mental healthworkshops run for all parents whose child has received a child and mental healthservice assessment
The relaxed and informal sessions designed by advanced practitioner Alan Wilmott look at what is meant by ‘mental health’, how to recognise good mental health in children and how to support them when it deteriorates and playful ways to engage with children and young people.
There are opportunities for parents to share ideas about what they find helpful and unhelpful in supporting their children’s emotional health,
Feedback shows parents feel more confident and less isolated, have a better understanding of mental illness and are more able to create and enjoy positive experiences with their child.
Alan says: ‘Being shortlisted for an RCNi Mental Health Practice award is a proud honour for our team.
‘The workshops aim to help parents and carers to reflect on how their child/young person is currently experiencing life. ‘We look to help parents/carers to develop resilience and a better understanding of what poor mental health might mean to their child or young person.’
‘Attendees have shared an increased level of confidence to discuss mental healthwith and give support to their young people.
‘Some parents/carers gain a greater insight into their own mental health and emotional wellbeing, which in turn has a positive impact on how they support their young person.’
Mental Health Practice editor Colin Parish was on the shortlisting panel. He says: ‘It’s been a great pleasure to see the wonderful work that mental health nurses are doing out there, often in stressful and pressured situations.
‘The shortlisted finalists are all worthy potential winners.’
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