CELEBRATIONS were in order as the winners for this year’s Mental Health Star Awards were announced.
After hundreds of nominations submitted to the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) for acts of heroism and innovation within the region through the Covid-19 pandemic, 11 awards were handed out at a virtual ceremony hosted by The Chase’s Paul Sinha.
One award receipt was Coventry’s Taylor Pattinson, who picked up an award for the reach, accessibility, and impact of his mental health podcast – The Waffle Shop Podcast.
Taylor said: “This is a huge honour and I’d like to thank my mum who was a real driving force behind making this podcast a reality.
“No one is defined by their mental health and these awards are a testament to everyone out there that even from painful and dark experiences, incredible things can still happen.”
This year’s awards were linked to the WMCA’s Mental Health Commission, whose remit includes highlighting examples of innovation and good practice in mental health.
The commission includes leaders from local authorities, the NHS, the business sector, sports, the criminal justice system and academia, as well as those who have experienced the challenges presented by the pandemic.
West Midlands Mayor, Andy Street, said: “The Mental Health Star Awards are a wonderful way to recognise the achievements of the many unsung heroes from across our region who are making such a positive impact within their communities.
“In some ways, lockdown brought mental health issues to the fore like never before and as Mayor, I want to see the wellbeing of West Midlands residents prioritised so that we can all flourish and reach our full potential.”
The winners were:
* Young Person aged 16 to 25 – Florence Grant
* Individual over 25 – Vickie Pring for Birmingham and Solihull. Ranjit Singh for the Black Country, Taylor Pattison for Coventry and Warwickshire
* Collaboration – Music and Mental Health Group
* Cariss Evans Award for innovation in work – Rebecca Mainstone
* Team, Service or Organisation (Large) – Like Minds Team at Adult Ed service Wolverhampton
* Team, Service or Organisation (Supporting Community Mental Health Through Being Active) – Gro-Organic
* Term, Service or Organisation (Targeted Support for Communities) – Himaya Haven and Lindale Recovery Services