Suffolk parent-led support group up for national award

Bec Jasper and Clare Morgan Hare from PACT which is up for a national award

Bec Jasper and Clare Morgan Hare from PACT which is up for a national award - Credit: Bec Jasper

A Suffolk group which helps parents of children with mental health difficulties has been shortlisted for a national award for its work. 

Parents and Carers Together (PACT) has been nominated for an award at The Positive Practice Mental Health Collaborative's national awards. 

PACT is a parent-led group which helps the families of young people with a number of mental health conditions in the county via social media and offers support through weekly meet-ups. 

The group is free, confidential and does not require referrals for families. 

Bec Jasper, one of the group's leaders said she was surprised to get the nod. 

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"It's a national award," she said. 

"We had no expectations of getting that far. We are a local group."

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PACT's nomination comes in the peer support category. 

"I am thrilled for the group," said Mrs Jasper. 

"They offer help and make sure everyone who needs support gets it."

Mrs Jasper has experience of the awards from the other side of the fence. 

"I have been a judge for them before," she said. 

"They get lots of nominations for every award.

"There's 20 or 30 for each category."

Those nominated include much larger companies and health and social care providers from up and down the country, which Ms Jasper says makes it all the impressive that PACT has been nominated. 

"We are small fry comparatively to these associations," she said.

"We are really grateful for being shortlisted."

Mrs Jasper said that the recognition should be given more to the families within the group who have been helping to support each other. 

"We don't like self promotion but this is recognition for all of our parents who give us their expertise," she said. 

"They do it time and time again."

PACT aren't the only Suffolk organisation that has been shortlisted for an award. 

The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust were also nominated in the mental health nursing category. 

Mrs Jasper said it was nice to have another organisation from the county recognised alongside them. 

Both finalists will have to wait until next week to find out if they have won their respective categories on October 7. 

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