The dedication and talent of NHS heroes who support people with mental health and learning disability needs has been celebrated at a glittering awards ceremony.

Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust held its staff celebration event, the Black Country Awards for Talent and Achievement, at the Grand Station in Wolverhampton on 20th October.

The moving event celebrated the hard work of staff and volunteers who have gone above and beyond to help patients, carers, fellow staff and communities across the Black Country.

With sponsorship funding the awards, Secure Healthcare Limited was the headline sponsor, along with co-sponsor Eden Brown Synergy.

The awards, which were held in person for the first time following the Covid-19 pandemic, were the first to take place since the Trust became lead provider of mental health, learning disability and autism services in Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton.

The event recognised the fantastic achievements of staff over the past year as the Trust looks forward to an even brighter future following securing Lead Provider status.

The organisers received over 300 nominations from staff and the public, giving the judging panel a tough task to whittle them down to the shortlist.

The breadth of talent at the Trust was recognised across 15 categories, ranging from Rising Star and Distinguished Service to Unsung Heroes and Patient’s Choice.

Satnam Kaur took home the trophy for Non-Clinical Unsung Hero in recognition for her work as a Senior Ward Administrator at Edward Street Hospital in West Bromwich.

Satnam, who was also shortlisted in the Divisional Star: Older Adult Mental Health category, said: “I’m overwhelmed! It was lovely that colleagues and friends and family had the opportunity to reflect and appreciate all we have done together, especially since the difficult times during Covid.

“I was so grateful to even be nominated so to win was really special. I couldn’t have done it without my fantastic colleagues, it really is a team effort.”

Marsha Foster, Acting Chief Executive at Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Black Country Awards for Talent and Achievement were a fantastic opportunity to recognise the teams and individuals who go above and beyond to make a real difference to the lives of our patients, carers and families.

“It was wonderful to celebrate the talent of our Trust and recognise the inspiring work that takes place every day to provide compassionate care to our communities across the Black Country.

“I was honoured to present an award and I am hugely proud of all the winners and nominees who are all a credit to our Trust.

“Whether people took home a trophy or not, they are all winners in my eyes.”

Jeremy Vanes, chair of Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, added: “It was an absolute pleasure for Black Country Healthcare Board members to present awards to staff and volunteers at the Black County Awards for Talent and Achievement.

“Events like this demonstrate the breadth and diversity of the services we provide across the Black Country, and the exceptional qualities of those who are nominated by their colleagues, peers and the public. 

“This year’s event recognised a record breaking number of categories. Whether the nominees had been with the organisation for decades or months, they all shone and inspired others around them.

“A huge congratulations to all the winners and nominees, I am incredibly proud of the talent, compassion and professionalism of our dedicated staff.”

The full list of winners at the Black Country Talent and Achievement Awards were:

Rising Star - Bea Hughes, Senior Art Psychotherapist

Clinical Unsung Hero, sponsored by Kier Construction – Judith Taverner, Deputy Ward Manager

Distinguished Service, sponsored by Secure Healthcare Solutions – Ann Detheridge, Head of Psychology for Older Adults Mental Health Division

Divisional Star: Older Adults Mental Health, sponsored by Eden Brown Synergy – Nicky Edgerton, Deputy Ward Manager

Divisional Star: Adult Mental Health, sponsored by The Access Group – Sharonjit Ranshi, Bed Manager

Divisional Star: Learning Disability – Tracey Shilvock, Principal Occupational Therapist

Divisional Star: Children, Young People & Families – All Age Eating Disorder Service

Divisional Star: Corporate – Financial Services Team

Bank Staff Member of the Year, sponsored by Allocate Software – Elizabeth Walker, Bank Healthcare Support Worker

Equality and Diversity Champion sponsored by WT Partnership – Hannah Gildroy, Occupational Therapist

Inspirational Leader sponsored by Pro-Noctis Ltd – Vicki Gobsill, Clinical Lead for Older Adult Therapeutic Service

Non-Clinical Unsung Hero – Satnam Kaur, Senior Ward Administrator

Award for Innovation, sponsored by Archus UK – CAHMS Ambassadors Wolverhampton

Volunteer of the Year – Agnes Wallwork, Expert by Experience & Lead Governor

Patient’s Choice Award – Dee Garland, Continence Nurse