The charity which works with people with medium to severe and/or enduring mental health problems, held its second Mental Wealth Awards at The Midland Hotel in Bradford last Friday. The event was to applaud the people who had secured employment (no mean feat for anyone in today`s difficult climate), but also to recognise those employers and professionals who had stood out as exceptional during 2012.
Peter Scotcher, a community Occupational Therapist received the Individual Award as the mental health professional who had done the most to support the employment agenda. Darren Sinsfield from Umeco received the Organisational Support Award, British Heart Foundation Shop in Shipley received the Voluntary Work Provider of the Year Award, Bradford Teaching Hospitals Trust the Work Placement of the Year Award and the Passenger Transport Service from Bradford Metropolitan District Council received the Employer of the Year Award. All of these individuals and employers had supported people recovering from mental health problems to achieve their potential and had demonstrated their commitment to equal opportunities.
Twenty people secured or retained some form of paid employment during the year 2012. As mental health issues are no respecter of persons their jobs they were also varied, they included: policy officer, shop assistant, customer service assistant, supermarket assistant, manager and programme officer.
The event was supported by Yorkshire and Humber Strategic Health Authority. Other employers donated time and goods to the event including: Nuffield Health in Cottingley, Morrisons, Hazzad and Seabook Crisps.
Charnjit Singh, the E-Factor employment worker from The Cellar Project, in announcing the Employer of The Year Award said “Work is important to everyone. It defines us. It cannot define us without an employer willing to give us an opportunity to work.” The awards were presented by the Deputy Lord Mayor of Bradford Clr Mike Gibbons, who congratulated all who had won awards and the staff of The Cellar Project.
Ken Priestley, the chair of The Cellar Project trustees rounded off the proceedings by announcing that after twenty seven years The Cellar Project had decided to change its name and from now on would officially be known as The Cellar Trust, a fitting end to a great event!