A GROUP of young people have come together to spread awareness of mental health.
The Oasis group (Opening up awareness and influencing support) is made up of young people aged 14 to 21 who work alongside various mental health services in a bid to improve the support that is available for children and young people who require help.
The group, made up of 18 members, meets weekly at Horizon Community College and they are trained as young commissioners under the ‘Future In Mind’ local area transformation plan and work in Barnsley and at national level.
It is funded through the Barnsley Clinical Commissioning Group and led by Chilypep (Children and Young People’s Empowerment Project).
Oasis has participated in projects with Barnsley CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services), MindSpace and Barnsley Hospital women’s/maternity and Children’s departments.
It also campaigns to make things better for other young people in relation to key issues that are important to them around mental health.
Its dedication for change and active role within the community, campaigning for better service provision for young people suffering with mental health has been recognised by Chantelle Carmen Parke, the participation and mental health training coordinator for the Children and Young People’s Empowerment Project, and she nominated them for a Young Champions award under the Young Team of the Year for Community category.
She said: “The young people in Oasis have their own lived experience of mental health, accessing services and support and have a passion for making change in mental health and they are truly an inspiration to work with.
“They have worked locally and nationally, working with the Royal College of Psychiatry to have young people’s voices heard within the implementation of the Mental Health Support teams in schools. They have also worked with NHS England to plan the Youth Summit Event around the NHS Long term plan in regards to children and young people’s mental health. Oasis work incredibly hard and they are passionate to make a positive change.
“For a lot of them they are speaking from experience which drives them to work and enforce what they do and it empowers them as well as helping their mental well-being.
“The group work incredibly hard and they deserve to be recognised for the difference they are making not just locally but nationally to help young people suffering with mental health.”