Sheffield Flourish is UK Digital Charity Leader of the Year!

We are delighted to share that Sheffield Flourish has been awarded UK Digital Charity Leader of the Year and been included in the list for the top 100 UK Digital Leaders for 2017.

Thank you to the mystery person who nominated us in the first place, the judges who shortlisted us and the people who took the time to vote for us to win.

This is recognition of the talents, ideas and efforts of the hundreds of people living with mental health conditions and supporters who have helped shape Sheffield Flourish in so many ways.

In July, Sheffield Flourish will be celebrating its first birthday (watch this space for further details on the party). What a year it has been!

At the beginning of the journey, Professor Brendan Stone articulated the paradigm shift we are trying to achieve in our manifesto

‘The concept that profound expertise is located within a community who have traditionally been defined by what we ‘lack’ – by deficit and difficulty – entails a paradigm shift’

We are a small charity with relatively little financial resources but we are incredibly rich in our networks and the talents, time and commitment of people who care about making a positive difference in our city.

Over the last year people living with mental health conditions have helped design, shape and build Sheffield Flourish, moderate, edit and create the content on the site and go out into communities to help others build the confidence and skills to go online safely and get involved in Sheffield Flourish.

So far we have over 100 inspiring real life stories on our site, over 10,000 people have visited the site viewing over 90,000 pages. Early feedback is showing we are helping to build confidence, connections and increase access to peer support and real life activities which help people to build the lives they want to lead.

“I think it’s kind of like a beacon in the dark, because so much is disappearing from mental health services because of all the cuts, despite, you keep hearing of money being invested and in reality is that it’s being cut. And to have something new and positive and vibrant appearing in that context is really amazing.” Sheffield Flourish Insight Panel Member

This national award is important to us because it recognises the value of digital which is driven by values and people power rather than profit and the importance of digital as an enabler to improving lives and it shines a spotlight on a community full of expertise, creativity and ambition!

Although this is a time to celebrate, we also realise we have a long journey ahead to realise our ambitions.

We are already busy in the background co-designing the new Sheffield Mental Health Guide and in the next year we will be reaching out to partners across the city who share our values and ambitions.

We will be exploring how we can build on our work to date to grow an education exchange based on solidarity and the exchange of skills, knowledge and friendship.

We will be looking for people to help us fundraise, get involved in building the education exchange, partner organisations interested in collaborating, sponsors and funders who wish to support this innovation and champions across the city who can help us in any way.

We will also be looking for a central location to base our education exchange hub so please do get in touch if you have any offers or ideas!

Email: info@sheffieldflourish.co.uk        Twitter: @shefflourish

A heart-felt thank you to each and every person and organisation that has contributed to Sheffield Flourish so far, despite everything going on around us, collectively we have achieved something really special.

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