“It was totally because of Graham that I was able to start going out of the house” – a service user’s story
The community mental health teams for older people provide assessment, treatment and care planning for service users over the age of 65 and have a range of mental health problems. A service user working supported by health care assistant Graham Brearley wrote a letter expressing his gratitude for Graham’s ‘outstanding work’ with the team.
“Graham has been my support worker for approximately 6 years. I am extremely grateful for the times I have been able to spend with Graham and for all of his support which have had a huge positive effect upon my recovery.
“Within the boundaries of Graham’s professional role I feel to have built trust in him as a person and in his professional role. His support has given reassurance not only to me but also to my close family. I feel at ease to discuss my feelings and situations with him confidentially. He has made it easy to talk with him knowing that he listens fully and is interested and genuinely cares for my wellbeing.
“Through Graham’s support I have got back in touch with my own interests in life and he has helped me re-build confidence within myself, especially in social situations which play a big part in my life. It was totally because of Graham that I was able to start going out of the house on my own to meet him in various social settings. I can do that entirely now.
“I am very lucky to have known Graham as my support worker, he has never been over-bearing or to push me into anything that was not right for me. His help was given to me at my own pace. He has a very reassuring personality which is consistent and enthusiastic towards his job and towards life. All of this has been a breath of fresh air to me, and motivational during a very difficult period in my life.
“I have always known that one day Graham’s support of me would have to draw to a close and I accept this. It will be a real loss to me but I will always remain grateful to the mental health services for providing me with this support and of course, to Graham himself for being the recipient of his many life skills, professionalism and kindness. I wish Graham all the best in his future work – he has so much to offer to those people in need.”
Graham’s client also gave him a gift – a Labradorite gemstone which is a symbol of companionship and a stone of change and transformation.