I chose to join Sussex Partnership because I had some training placements here. The supervision was fantastic and the team did a great job of helping me develop my knowledge.
I think that Sussex Partnership do things differently in terms of investing in staff and linking up with universities to provide people with training. They place a priority on training and workforce development to encourage people to stay here.
I always wanted to be a psychologist and work with children and young people; helping them make a change while they still have their whole lives ahead of them.
Once qualified, I wanted to come straight back. When I returned, the transition from trainee to qualified psychologist was fast. There was a jump in caseload and also the severity of cases, but the team were very good at mediating any anxiety I felt as a new team member. They knew exactly where I was in my development and understood where and when to support me.
I have just begun my interpersonal psychotherapy training, which is funded by Sussex Partnership. It’s another form of evidence-based therapy and accreditation. If a client is not responding to CBT and systemic therapy, it means we can try another approach.
Our patients have complex presentations and are usually at high risk to themselves or others. They can be suffering from anxiety, depression and eating disorders. Our work is intense and challenging because of the severity of illnesses we see.
I’m part of a friendly and supportive multi-disciplinary team who always make the time to listen. I appreciate the fact that difference of opinion is genuinely respected here and differing perspectives are valued. You’re never on your own.
From empathy to action
We go beyond empathy to action. We instil hope and having hope is what makes a difference. I’m extremely proud when the whole team comes together for a complex case, when you can really see the joined-up approach working. There can be many outside factors, such as home life or school, which keep the difficulty going for a person. It’s great when we can effect change in such complex situations.
And then sometimes it’s the little wins that you feel the most: young people trusting me enough, having the confidence to tell me what’s going on in their world, small smiles from someone who is deeply depressed or someone with an eating disorder telling me they enjoyed a piece of chocolate. All chinks of light after a long battle.