Matthew McArdle is a Senior Pharmacist here at NELFT, working in our Essex CAMHs service. He will be carrying out a range of activities over the coming months in an attempt to raise money for mental health issues, particularly in children. His goal is to carry out no less than three triathlons in 6 months.
Matthew talks openly in his video and below, about why this challenge is so important to him personally.
"I have been a qualified pharmacist coming up to 8 years now. Although I spent many of those years working as a physical health pharmacist, I have always been fascinated by human behaviour and the inner cosmos of the human brain. Moving from adult care to work in paediatrics at Great Ormond Street Hospital, I found it extremely rewarding working in this field. Being introduced to the work of David Eagleman -a prominent neuroscientist led me to reflect on issues such as how our brains are developed and are moulded by childhood experiences.
This interest in the human mind led to a new stage in my professional development as I decided to seek a career in mental health. My commitment to this new career pathway was reinforced by the onset of Covid 19 and all that came with it, lockdown, families not seeing each other, people becoming isolated. I knew that this would have a massive impact on the mental health of all people. I made my move into mental health first working with acutely mentally ill adults, but I still had an interest in paediatrics. Given the materials I had read on the developing brain of a child, I felt that children who may find it more difficult to articulate themselves, we may be overlooking just how large of an impact that Covid 19 will have on children.
This is when I then moved into a role at North East London Foundation Trust as a senior pharmacist for children and adolescent mental health (CAMHs). Seeing the fantastic services that NELFT provide, I wondered how I could promote these services, I came across a charity called young minds which help young people how to find the services they need and how to utilise the services correctly.
My goal is to raise money but more importantly raise awareness. Key word being awareness. I will spend the next 6 months continuing to raise awareness but completing task such as long distance running, cycling and swimming, and carrying out an outdoor sprint triathlon in London at the end of the 6 months. The progress of my training and task can be followed on my fund page and also on my Instagram."
Instagram handle: @m_mcardle9