Chilypep’s OASIS Group nominated for National Award

Members of the OASIS group campaign to improve mental health services for young people.

This article originally appeared in the Barnsley Chronicle on December 29th by Lynsey Bradford 

A Barnsley mental health group for young people is in the running for a national award.

OASIS, which stands for Opening Up Awareness & Support & Influencing Services is a Chilypep group based in Barnsley which aims to give young people a say in how mental health services are run.

The group has been shortlisted for ‘Innovator of the Year’ in the national Positive Practice in Mental Health Awards.

The award recognises children and young people who have taken the lead in planning, organising and delivering projects with a goal to help organisations such as schools, to promote positive mental health and inspire hope in children and young people.

OASIS Lead Project Worker Chantelle Park at the launch of the Mental Health First Aid Kit on World Mental Health Day 2017.

OASIS has developed a Mental Health First Aid Kit which was launched in Barnsley on World Mental Health Day in October 2017 and aims to make mental health more visible in public spaces and help young people struggling with ill mental health to ask for help.

Lead Project Worker Chantelle Parke said: “The shortlisting is a credit to the hardworking, passionate and creative young people in the OASIS group and their commitment to finding new and exciting ways to end the stigma around mental health and improve services for young people. The launch of the Mental Health First Aid Kit was a huge success and we look forward to seeing how it will be taken forward by schools, colleges and mental health services in the future.”

Patrick Otway, mental health commissioner at Barnsley Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “This is a real credit to the young people involved in OASIS. Speaking up and getting involved isn’t always easy and they have really done themselves proud this year.”

The winner will be announced at the awards on January 6th.

LISTEN: How does it feel for young people transitioning through mental health services?

Chilypep is working with the Child and Adult Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and Adult Mental Health Services (AMHS) to help them come together and improve the process of moving through mental health services for young people.

Often, young people find that they become distressed and frustrated when moving through the services  as they have to answer the same question several times to several people, fill out a lot of paperwork that can be confusing, and feel overwhelmed by what feels like a barrage of information and intrusive questioning before they can get the help they need.

Chilypep project worker Sian Beynon presented the above audio clip at a conference with CAMHS and AMHS where STAMP group members consulted on how to improve transitions between services for young people.

“It can be a very stressful and overwhelming experience for young people to move between services,” says Sian.

“They are at a point where they need to feel heard and understood by the organisations and services they’re in contact with and it can  be a barrier to getting help when the processes aren’t in place for a smooth transition from different services or when leaving CAMHS and accessing AMHS. That’s why we’re working to improve this transition, based upon the consultations with young people and what they have told us.”

The audio clip above is an audio representation of how it feels, the kind of thoughts and questions young people have when moving through services or accessing them for the first time.