To mark Children's Mental Health Week in early February, Paediatric Mental Health Liaison Sister, Angie Salmons, and Consultant Nurse for Mental Health, Ian Noonan, hosted a professional summit exploring visions for Children and Young People's Mental Health at CHFT.

Ian said: "The absolute highlight of the day for many, was hearing from Barney (12) and his mum, Jo, about their experience of accessing help with his mental health, which was otherwise preventing him from accessing regular screening and testing for his long-term physical health problem.

"Barney agreed to present at the conference. He didn't need any persuasion, and he was totally professional in his approach. He was engaging, compelling, and a confident speaker who gave a really moving account of the impact of his phobia on accessing treatment, his identity and confidence, and how we as a trust had helped him.

One student nurse, Ellie, commented "It was like the whole room held their breath as Barney spoke - they were paying so much attention to his every word. We learn about the importance of the patient voice at Uni, but I have never heard it so clearly expressed and so universally valued and listened to before". 

Representatives from CHFT: South West Yorkshire Partnership Foundation Trust Child and Adolescent Services; Kirklees and Calderdale Children's Services; Social Services; and independent sector providers, attended the day. There were papers, presentations, and workshops delivered by Angie Salmons and Louise Riby; Wendy Walker (Senior practitioner SWYFT CAMHS Crisis Team); Daisy Unsworth (BLOSM); Ian Noonan; Dr Catherine Wright and Dr Megan McTiffin (CHFT Health Psychology); Karen Perring (NHS England Yorkshire & Humber CYP Mental Health Lead); and Cat Chadwick (Senior Lecturer in Mental Health at the University of Huddersfield).