Northwick Park Bridging the gap

Posted on: 05/08/2021 in Youth Blog
The Bridging the Gap scheme by Michael Appouch

The ‘Bridging the Gap’ pilot scheme is to develop the relationship between young people from Brent and Harrow and staff at Northwick Park Hospital to learn and understand the barriers young people face when accessing health service, particularly A&E and Mental Health services at the hospital. Using the connections of Young Brent Foundation, Harrow Young Foundation and St Giles, we coordinated for young people with experiences in NWP Hospital to attend a roundtable with senior staff to collaborate on solutions that would improve relationships on both sides. St Giles will provide key pastoral care and develop relationships with young people, particularly those at risk of violence.

‘Bridging the Gap’ was an interesting and challenging opportunity for myself and other young people to voice our experiences with Northwick Park staff, and receive genuine, considered responses to the problems we raised. Being able to hear from doctors, nurses and occupational therapists about how our experiences should have been handled and what we can do to have our voices heard in those spaces was an outcome I never expected but was welcome. I think it was a success as we were able to discuss rarely talked about issues such as mental health, diversity in hospitals and youth violence from the perspective of young people in Brent and Harrow.

Proposed Activites

  • Developing terms of reference with staff and group
  • Monthly NWP meetings
  • Organise two community engagement events
  • Community research and insight gatherings

Outcomes

Multiple sessions between senior staff at Northwick Park Hospital and young people from Brent and Harrow which included interrogation into the belief cycle which restricts young people from accessing health care earlier, prejudices present from staff toward young people accessing services and vice versa as well as solution focused role plays and testimonies which aim to highlight the stresses present at the point of access during hospital visits.


Michael Appouch