Councillor Sanchia Alasia, Mayor of Barking and Dagenham 2018/19, visited the NELFT Brookside Adolescent Unit on Friday 15 February. The Mayor initiated the visit as part of her mayoral focus on disability and attended with the mayoral disability champion Funmi Alake.
Rebekah Bewsey, Interim Children and Young People (CYP) Care Pathway Lead and Modern Matron and Emma Berry, Home Treatment Team Manager, led the welcoming party.
Sharing updates on work happening that supports the health and emotional wellbeing of young people using the services of Brookside, was by Rebekah and Emma. Updates on current practice and methods used to engage our young people and to support admissions who also have a diagnosis of a learning disability or autism, was also shared with the Mayor. There was also a tour of the building with the Mayor, who also asked many questions about the work of the team. Time was also spent by the Mayor with the young people that are currently in the care of Brookside and they talked about their experiences and progress.
Rebekah said: “It was a pleasure to facilitate the Mayor at Brookside today. We are immensely proud of the work that has happened here and the improvement we have seen in the service we provide. Equality and diversity are key priorities at Brookside and we have a number of ways in which we continuously review and improve the service for young people and their families and carers.”
Brookside is an adolescent mental health inpatient unit for 12-18 year olds. Over the last three years it has undergone an extensive environmental refurbishment and modernisation of the service offer. Praise and congratulations were given by the Mayor to the team on this transformation and the subsequent CQC rating of‘Outstanding’. Also the unit was subsequently awarded the 2018 RCN Mental Health Practice Award and has recently been accredited by the Quality Network for Inpatient CAMHS (QNIC). Now, the Brookside unit is leading nationally in its model of inpatient care and is sharing good practice with other organisations.