Unsung NHS heroes recognised for making a difference

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Published on: 13th June 2019

Unsung NHS heroes who are making big differences to the lives of people with mental health problems and learning disabilities in Lincolnshire have been recognised at an awards ceremony.

Staff and volunteers who regularly go the extra mile at Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, were celebrated as part of the ninth Making a Difference Every Day – Staff Excellence Awards, which took place on Friday 7 June 2019.

There were lots of worthy winners on the night selected from categories which recognised people making a difference, inspiring leaders, volunteers and teams of the year.

The Trust received a record number of nominations this year which the 29 finalists and eventual 11 winners were chosen from. Over 300 nominations were received from colleagues, managers, patients, carers and other organisations, who recognised that their work stood out from the crowd.

The event, sponsored by a number of local and national businesses including the University of Lincoln, Servelec, STALIS, Iaptus, Vinci Construction, Civica, Peachy Events and Systematic Print, was a fantastic way to take stock of what has been a busy year for Trust. It was also an opportunity to celebrate some of the outstanding achievements of staff and volunteers delivering services day to day.

Trust Chair, Paul Devlin believes the awards acknowledge the team spirit that exists throughout the organisation - which has resulted in LPFT performing stronger than ever.

These awards are a great way of recognising the hard work and effort all of our staff and volunteers put into their roles on a daily basis,” said Paul. “All the finalists and everyone who received a nomination should feel immensely proud of their achievements.

Among those receiving their award on the night was Volunteer of the Year, John Donoghue, who volunteered over one hundred hours of support and counselling for LPFT’s Healthy Minds Lincolnshire (HML) service, which provides emotional wellbeing support to children and young people.

Lee Scigala, HML Service Manager, nominated John for the award. She said:

John had previously been a service user of LPFT acute and community mental health and alcohol services. John decided to turn his life around; he started a counselling course and began volunteering. He has volunteered over one hundred hours for the HML service, delivering counselling interventions to children and young people. John's motivation to overcome adversity and succeed is inspirational.

John worked extremely hard to complete his counselling placement and he qualified with a distinction. He is a fantastic example of how with the right support, anyone can turn their lives around. John has shown massive strength in character to make and maintain the changes to his life and I am so glad he has received the recognition he deserves. To add to this achievement, John has now secured a permanent role working with HML as a Healthy Minds Practitioner - this is fantastic news for John and for our Trust.

This year’s People’s Award nominated by patients and carers went to Nikki Gibson, Clinical Lead and Occupational Therapist for LPFT’s Staff Wellbeing Service.

On winning this prestigious award Nikki said:

I feel absolutely overwhelmed and honoured that I have been nominated by someone who has used our Staff Wellbeing service.

For someone to share such a personal story in order to nominate me is truly beyond words.

The work I do and the role I have is about supporting staff to be the best they can be and to enable them to bring ‘all of themselves’ to work and also in their personal lives. As an occupational therapist, I work to understand a person’s values, hopes, fears, strengths and challenges in order that I may use these to support the person onto their recovery path, and to find a level of balance and wellbeing that may have been missing for them.

Winning this award was such a wonderful experience, and it’s been great to hear and see the reactions of my colleagues in support of me. The whole night was full of support for one another and a celebration of the work we do as an organisation, it was joyful, kind and fun and I feel very humbled by the whole experience.

The full list of recipients of the 2019 Making a Difference Every Day - Staff Excellence Awards is available on the Trust’s website www.lpft.nhs.uk/making-a-difference

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