Tell us a little about your background?

I grew up in the north east of Scotland and went to university to study primary school teaching. I then became ill with Bi Polar and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, so I started to do some voluntary work and now I have over 10 years experience working to support people with their mental health.

What made you want to work for a Mental Health Charity?

I fell into it a little, I had been doing some voluntary work and the organisation I was volunteering for were keen to get me into a staff job with them. Peer Support work has been really good for me, it is a different way of providing support to people, by sharing the positive aspects of how I cope with my illness to help them in their recovery.

Tell us about the Project you work on?

I work for the Aberdeen Nova project, this is a community based project, people can refer themselves to us, or they are referred by GPs, or other care providers. The service we provide here is unique to the individual, the person fills out their own application form and we work with them to understand what they want to achieve. At this project it is mainly 1-1 support, we also run 2-3 WRAP workshops a year and POWWOWS, we all take turns in running these. We run occasional social groups too.

What does a typical day at work for you involve?

My job on this project is really varied, there is no such thing as a typical day. My main focus is 1-1 support, sharing coping techniques and strategies. I also attend various events run by the Scottish Recovery Network to collaborate with other organisations and also deliver presentations on what peer support is. My typical hours of work are 0930 – 1600, however I do work hours outside of this, as and when required.

What do you enjoy about working on this project?

I really enjoy working on this project, because the work is really varies, I get to do lots of different things and it is very rewarding. Seeing people recover and move on from the service is the best part.

What makes Penumbra a great place to work?

Penumbra is a great place to work, we get lots of on the job training, there are new training courses every year, and it’s a very varied job

Describe your job here in three words?

Rewarding, Challenging, Unique