In a new feature we are contacting past students that are working in various Key Roles during the Covid -19 Pandemic. We want to celebrate their service and thank them for their hard work.


Here’s an update from Nina Hammond: I’m a mental health nurse specialising in child and adolescent mental health. Currently, I manage an adolescent inpatient ward in South London. Mental health nursing is all about supporting people during their most difficult times, and helping them to keep their links to the community and their family and friends. All of this is a lot harder due to Covid-19. Most staff are still coming to work, but visits are a lot more restricted so young people are having to use video chats to stay in touch with their families. We are also hosting remote schooling on the ward, as our patients still need to be in education! It’s all a big change, for staff and young people, but we’re getting through. One of the biggest changes is we’ve had to start wearing uniforms. Usually mental health nurses wear their own clothes to work, but to make sure we not bringing any germs in or out of the ward we’ve all been given scrubs to wear. We also have masks to wear on the ward, and other PPE if we need it. The hospital trust I work for has set up Rest and Recharge Hubs for us, so staff can call in for a free drink or snack – even some basic items of shopping in case we’re unable to get to the supermarket on our days off. It’s so important to make sure we’re looking out for ourselves and each other at this time. One of the most difficult things for me has been being so far away from my family. I love living in London, and have been here for many years, however all my family still live in Stoke. Even though we don’t see each other very often, it’s hard to know I can’t just head up the M6 and see them all when I want! The general public have been so supportive though, and my ward has had donations of toiletries, games, activities and snacks for the young people and staff. It makes it easier to know we’re not alone in this and everyone is behind us.
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Here’s an update from Deborah and Bethany:

Deborah and Bethany Coulson are working in community care together as a mother and daughter team. They are working long hours, starting early in the morning until night time providing care for the elderly who are isolated and dependant on their visits. They wanted to say thank you and well done to everyone else who are working and respecting social distancing.
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Here’s an update is from Jade Ellis-Johnson:

Jade Ellis-Johnson attended St Margaret Ward between 2002-2007 and won awards for sports when she was a student.
She is currently a corporal in the RAF and got awarded a medal for being brave during her deployment to Afghanistan. She is currently volunteering to help deliver food parcels to those in need or can’t get out.
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