Fund Raising for Acorn Unit

Patients on Acorn Unit, Carleton Clinic, Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are able to enjoy outdoor activities from the £600 fund raising efforts from their health care staff.

Bernadette Mallinson, Health Care Assistant on Acorn Unit is passionate about the health and wellbeing of the patients and goes one step further to raise funds, organising events to support them in their rehabilitation.

The Acorn Unit is a 16 bed unit for men. The purpose of the unit is to facilitate rehabilitation for people with complex mental health needs, working alongside each person to develop their strengths.

She explained “I have focussed on the theme of healthy mind, health body and how small changes in food choices can make a big difference. I have been working on healthy options, good quality, colourful and nutritious food to help the patients gain cooking skills for the future. A representative from Slimming World and a member who has had significant weight loss gave a demonstration and chatted with the ward”.

Her next challenge was a 50 mile walk over three days, starting in Keswick and ending in Gilsland. On the third day the walkers were in fancy dress to coincide with Halloween. Bernadette was supported by friends and colleagues along the way for which she was very grateful and said she didn’t think she could have done it all without them.

Shaun Thomson, Ward Manager said “Bernadette is passionate about patient care and is always looking for the next challenge to do something that will benefit their health and wellbeing. Her energy and enthusiasm motivates others to get involved and she demonstrates the Trust’s values in her day to day work”.

They have now raised £600 and by involving the patients they decided to purchase tables and benches for outside activities and are hopeful the weather will be good.

Bernadette is now on a mission to improve cooking skills for patients. She is feeling hopeful and has applied for a community grant which will provide a nutritional specialist to visit the Acorn Unit twice a week to help patients’ make changes in their diets. The grant would also buy food and equipment which will be used in one to one and group session.

Bernadette’s enthusiasm has led to her recently being featured in the local newspaper and radio station.