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Welcome to your October 2022 Compass Points.

Rachel Writes: Our ONE Compass and values-based approach shines through

This month’s edition is bursting with so many service and staff stories from all parts of Compass. It’s so inspiring to see not just what people are doing but also the amount of care and pride people are taking in their work. There is much to reflect on…

In this edition we learn about the collaboration between Compass Phoenix, Be and Positive Effect …coming together to co-produce and develop a bereavement training package in response to evidenced needs identified through a local mental health survey. This way of working epitomises the ONE Compass approach and culture that enables teams to bring together their skills, knowledge, and experience to create high quality packages that can be shared across all of Compass recognising that many of the issues faced by children, young people and families are relevant to all our services.

Self belief

In other news stories, we learn of A’s road to recovery with Anthony’s unwavering support and Mandy’s reflections on her own personal journey and the attitudes of school staff which doubted her ability to succeed. Both stories resonate with Compass’ mission and vision which is a fundamental belief that everyone has a talent and part of our role is to help children, young people and ourselves to aspire and ignite that sense of self belief that anything is possible if you have the right people around you.

Getting volunteering right

And Dom’s piece of how volunteering will be taken forward in Compass. It is important we take the time to get this right and ensure we have a collective understanding of the added value it will bring to the organisation and our services. Ensuring there is a clear alignment to our mission, vision and values so any volunteering work is grounded within the programme aims and principles. By Dom spending time upfront listening to staff will be time well spent so we can develop an infrastructure and framework that is both holistic and inclusive to all.

Values Champions Awards

Please scroll down for my video on the Values Champions Awards and our Rewards and Recognition scheme. The deadline for nominations for the Values Champions Awards is December 2nd.

Anthony in Enfield sorts it!

Read the remarkable story and watch the moving testimony of a teenage boy, living on the streets of London, who would go to sleep believing he was going to die. He credits our Transitional Worker Anthony MCLarty at Enfield Sort It! with not only turning his life around but saving it, too.

The teenager, now has a top job as a foreign currency broker at Canary Wharf, still aged 18.

I always felt that he did care and actually was someone that wanted to help he had to deal with sorting out all my funding for rehab and finding a rehab facility that I could go to. It took a while but without Anthony, I’m not sure if I’d be alive today.

18 year old

Get the full story below.

CYPDAS Gemma steps into NEET new role

Gemma’s role works directly with ‘at risk’ and priority groups of young people who are truants or are excluded from school, educational or employment settings and are affected by substance misuse.

She said: “It’s a journey. And it can take a long time, but, it works. And it I’ve seen it work.”

“I genuinely care about everyone I work with. I want to help them to get the best possible outcome.”

Read more here and watch Gemma’s video interview.

Gemma – why I love working for Compass

She says: “Trying to keep children safe and on the right path is something I’m really passionate about.”

Compass Be, Phoenix and Positive Effect work together to produce a new bereavement package

Click the link to read how our workers in North Yorkshire have responded to a call for help and are now delivering much needed training and guidance.

There’s also a video with Pip Nix telling us all about it. Her enthusiasm is infectious!

And here’s our Pip – she loves working for Compass

Our Senior Mental Health Lead Training receiving great feedback.

Please direct your partner organisations to us!

Training Officer Danielle Grant, who conducts our Senior Mental Health Lead training courses has asked colleagues: “Please do remind schools you are working with how important this training is – they can access a grant from DfE of £1,200 to help them access a course. Please direct them to us. It is a truly excellent course.

She said: “The Compass course has been developed in conjunction with our MHSTs to reflect the Compass whole school approach audit and action planning process. It costs £795. This leaves the school with £405 to spend on staff backfill to enable the SMHL to attend the course, or – as we encourage them to do – on wellbeing initiatives!”

Read all about this work we do. There’s also a great video giving you more information.

New Coventry service starts in December

Compass will begin a new service from 1 December 2022 and will be taking over the ‘Reach Service’ that has been delivered by Coventry and Warwickshire Mind and Relate Coventry and Warwickshire.

Derbyshire contract beginning on 1st January

Rachel Bundock, our CEO, welcomed the award of a new contract to provide MHST services in Derby and Derbyshire.

She said the organisation’s wide experience has helped it develop a unique model for commissioners.

Rachel added: “We are absolutely delighted to be delivering this incredibly important service and we recognise the trust placed in us to do our very best for the children and young people of Derby City and Derbyshire.

The new service will employ 88 people.

Read more below.

Contract extension for GO…

Compass GO MHST’s contract has been extended until 2024. The commissioner spoke highly of the team and their ‘can do’ attitude and the continuing praise and positive feedback about the service she receives from professionals and wider stakeholders

Bloom’s community events on World Mental Health Day

C4H supports scores of schools for WMHD

Healthy Lifestyle Coordinator, Jake Pantony, said: “We were looking to reduce the stigma associated with mental health, and get people talking about mental health…”

Jake – why I love my role with Compass

Compass Be out and about for World Mental Health Day

Compass Go marks World Mental Health Day with new podcast series

Thompson treats his colleagues during busy Black History Month

Be Team Leader, Michelle Eyre, said: “Through the month of October, Thompson has been raising awareness for BHM working with CYP in educational settings which included delivering workshops and awareness stalls.”

Safe East school business students over two day event

Mariam, Engagement and Participation Support Worker, said: “With over 80 c-cards sign ups and hundreds of condoms distributed, I think it’s fair to say it was a success.”

Towering team sit down to celebrate together

Staff at our Tower Hamlets Safe East service were taken out in London as a big thank you for their efforts in achieving a rating of “good” from the CQC for the sexual health strand of their work.

Mandy tailored her degree to support her work

Appreciative Connect for Health colleagues hold a birthday party for admin angel Andi

C4H Admin lead Andi Leach has thanked her colleagues for a party to celebrate her 40th birthday at the Rugby hub.

Andi Leach

The team at the central hub of Connect for Health threw a birthday lunch bringing in pasta salads, little cakes and vegetable sticks and dips laid out on the communal lunch table, everyone had something to enjoy.

In an email sent to all attending staff at the end of the day, Andi said: “Well, what can I say… a BIG thank you to everyone for their birthday wishes, cards and gifts!  I have been spoilt . It was amazing to see so many faces in the office today for our first “build a buffet” in the new Rugby home.

“I am totally overwhelmed!”

The team took the opportunity to send their birthday wishes to Andi, including kind messages about what a difference she makes to the service.

New to Connect for Health, Clinical Operations Manager Isabel Main said: “In my first week it became clear to me how approachable, friendly, and efficient Andi is. I knew I was in safe hands right from the start. Have a fabulous birthday Andi!”

Family Brief Intervention Worker, Tracy Allard said “Nothing is too much for Andi. She will go out of her way to find a solution to a problem.”

Learning Disability Practitioner Kirsty Elliot said: “Andi has always been a constant support and fountain of knowledge. Andi is thoughtful and caring and is a friend we are truly fortunate to have.”

Laying the ground work for Compass volunteering

Dom Tooze, Compass’ new Volunteer Coordinator.

It’s one thing thinking about the potential of volunteering from my desk in York, but meeting colleagues in services and hearing their thoughts has been exciting and thought provoking. It will be challenging, but I’m excited about introducing a volunteering programme which works for everyone.

I’ve enjoyed having the chance to get out there and meet some of the teams, including those in Barnsley and Enfield.

Having settled in at Compass, I’m now working towards the next steps of designing and implementing the volunteering programme at Compass.

A significant step is the progress made defining the aims and principles of volunteering at Compass, on which I’ve been well supported by the volunteering steering group. We’re still fine-tuning some of the language before we share more, but these are some points we can share now (and some of my thoughts about them) –

  • Volunteering is activity that involves contributing time, skills, and (lived) experiences to support the mission and services of Compass
  • The term ‘volunteers’ as a noun can be a barrier to some, as such we will typically refer to ‘people who volunteer’ instead
  • The purpose of volunteering at compass is to increase our social impact within local communities and reduce health inequalities
  • We expect people will volunteer at Compass for a range of reasons – to give back, to gain skills & experience, and to improve their wellbeing. We aim to pay attention to what people want to get out of their time spent volunteering and help them achieve that.

The second point is something which has been clear to me since I started working in volunteering – traditionally, a lot of volunteering has been carried out by people for whom being ‘a volunteer’ is a huge part of their identity. While that is fantastic (and those people are always welcome to engage in volunteering), it’s important to recognise that if we want volunteering to be more diverse (in terms of who does it and how it’s done) we need to respect that it will often be just one part of any volunteer’s life.

Every volunteering programme should be based on aims and a purpose. The best experiences I’ve had of volunteering (as a co-ordinator and as a volunteer) have been with organisations who ensure these aims and purpose aren’t just words on a page but are embedded in every part of volunteering – it’s a significant undertaking, and I’m really looking forward to doing my part in making this happen.

Let’s talk

I will also be preparing some basic volunteer role profiles, based on my discussions with the steering group and those services I have met online and in person. These will give us a starting point – the exciting bit is what follows, where I’ll be able to share these with colleagues in services, and fine tune these roles so they’re the best fit across Compass.

I’ll be reaching out about this and more in the coming months, but my virtual door is always open – if you would like a meeting to discuss ideas, if you would like to pop me an idea you’ve had (there’s no such thing as a bad idea), or if you’d like a more informal ten minute ‘e-coffee’ break to discuss anything, let me know at

Dom – why I love working for Compass.

Grateful for the help and support you’ve received from a colleague? Tell us about it…

Just Say Thanks…

Rich praise for Alaicha

A powerful tribute has been paid to Alaicha Pinnock, Interim Service Manager at Enfield Sort It! who leaves us in November to begin a new adventure.

Rich Thomas, Operations Manager, said Alaicha had been instrumental in leading her team through a very challenging set of circumstances over the past 18 months. She led the team with “drive and integrity” to ensure the service continued to provide safe and effective care and treatment for the young people of Enfield.

Alaicha won a CEO Award this year for her integrity

Rich said: “Alaicha’s committed and unrelenting pursuit to provide the young people of Enfield with a well led, safe and effective drugs and alcohol service should be recognised and celebrated as she leaves the organisation.

“Alaicha has been an absolute pleasure to work with, providing challenge, innovation, humour and humility throughout her time with Compass.

“You will be sorely missed but I wish you all the very best for your future learning and career.”

A huge thank you from me to Mandy Nunn for her assistance with forging contacts abroad for World Mental Health Day! Much appreciated and turned out to be a really interesting piece of work. –

Alice Sotirchos, Training & Consultation Worker, Compass Phoenix

I would love to say Thank you to a few colleagues at Compass. I started with Compass on 17 October and nicely into my second week now, enjoying it and feeling part of the team.

I wanted to say … “Thanks” to the whole team for making me feel so welcome, part of the Compass team and family and for their support to ensure my on-boarding is successful. I do appreciate how busy everyone is and grateful for their support. A special “shout out” to Saff Mason and Donna Wilson… Thank you for being so generous with your valuable time and for putting up with my endless questions and enquiries! You’ve both been amazing! 😊 – Alison Walmsley, Interim HR Specialist

I would like to say a huge thank you to Anne and the connect for Health leadership team for all of their support over the last few months. It helps to know that they are there to support when needed.

Thank you. – Kirsty Elliott, Learning Disability Practitioner, C4H.

I’d like to say thank you to Robert Walwyn from Compass Phoenix for his support and input into the EMIS transfer. Robert has provided amazing support and input throughout the process and has really utilised his IT skills to support getting the system ready for transfer. He has maintained his ‘day job’ and has picked up numerous additional tasks to develop the system and get it ready for Go-live date of the 1st November, with a can-do attitude throughout! – Zoe Davis, Service Manager, Compass Phoenix

I would like to thank Clare Hitchin for her tireless work regarding our registration with the CQC.  Clare has had to re-do and re-submit various documents and forms and has had to be tenacious in getting problems resolved.  She has also had to spend at least a zillion hours on the CQC helpline – all done with good grace.  Massive thank you, Clare.


A big thank you to C4H staff, particularly the Rugby team who have had to be particularly solution focused over the extensive IT issues being experienced at the new Rugby office. Moving offices certainly hasn’t been straightforward ~ to say the least!  Thank you for your patience whilst we try and get all of these technicalities resolved.  I am hoping that by the time you read this, we will have working internet.  Fingers crossed! – Karen Cornick, Service Manager, C4H

Over in NEL MHST we have been collating the results of our student wellbeing surveys over the half term break. There are 6 Supervising Practitioners with responsibility for the survey results and we all wanted to send a huge thank you to Sam Walters for quantifying the results into excel and charting the data for us for all. Time is in short supply and sorting through all the data individually would have taken us each a lot of time (and emotion!!) but Sam’s super tech skills and generosity has saved us from this and enabled us to focus the time instead on the individualised offer for each school we support based on the data provided.

Honestly cannot thank him enough for his support with this From Kirsty, Niki, Zowie, Andrea and Jackie – Kirsty Sanderson, Supervising Practitioner, Compass GO…

Massive thanks to everyone at Compass…GO North East Lincolnshire Mental Health Support Teams for making me feel so welcome already in my first couple of weeks 😊 – Sarah Allen, Engagement & Participation Worker, Compass GO…

We would really like to give a special thanks to Stuart our Admin. He works so hard and goes above and beyond every day to support us as a team- we can rely on him beyond his administrative role, and he is a valued member of our compass bloom team. We want to show him just how much we appreciate him, and all he does for us. From all the trainee EMHPs at Compass Bloom. – Samantha Ryan-Fenton, Trainee EMHP, Compass Bloom

As I am new in post please can I say a thank you to everyone in Connect 4 Health Warwickshire for my lovely welcome into the team and to Fie in HR for being so patient with me – thank you. – Isabel Main, Clinical Operations Manager.

Take Good Care –

Your Health and Wellbeing with Danielle Grant

Danielle – Our Mental Health and Wellbeing Training Officer

Happy Autumn, one and all. Happy Second Spring (The term used to describe the Menopause in China)

This month the focus will be on ‘Keep Learning’. I recently attended a wellbeing conference, and I was keen to find out a little more around Women’s health; specifically around Menopause. Some of you may have been aware that the 18th October is World Menopause Awareness Day; this year addressing ‘Brain Fog and Memory Loss’ as a result of the Menopause (that 100% of women will go through). The need to break the stigma and allow women to openly discuss their concerns, experiences, and symptoms within the workplace, specifically, but also with their families is as important as ever- as always: Let’s challenge this taboo.

Peppy- a workplace menopause support charity stated that 50% of women will suffer from the various symptoms of menopause and 25% will suffer so badly they will feel the need to leave their jobs or reduce their hours. The NHS page from menopause posts further findings about the large number of women who suffer with brain fog, memory loss and inability to concentrate and if you take a moment to consider how that might feel for professionals in the workplace; coupled with the small percentage of women that speak to the line managers about their problems and we have quite a concerning predicament.

So this month- to ‘keep learning’ I encourage you all to find out a little bit more about the symptoms that the women around you might be experiencing (perhaps in silence).

…then choose World Menopause Day 2022 toolkit

The above NHS & Bupa links have some interesting information as well as helpful resources from the Make A Difference site that was present at the conference.

If you are experiencing symptoms or having problems with brain for and memory loss, please take the time to speak to your line manager, engage with the resources above and refer to other support agencies who can offer you lifestyle tips and further guidance/ signposting.

 Please don’t suffer in silence.

Values Champions Awards

Managers urged to send in their nominations before 2nd December deadline

Rachel Bundock, our CEO, has urged managers to get their nominations in for the Values Champions Award, with the closing date now fixed at Friday, 2nd December.

Rachel said: “What we really want to do is to have loads of nominations across all the four awards, which really represent the incredible values and talents that we have across all of our services.

“The Values Champions Awards, which is the pinnacle of the year, really tries to showcase and celebrate across all of Compass the incredible talent, along with the values that people display on on an everyday basis.”

Read the full transcript of her video here.

I would really encourage managers to really now start actively thinking about their Values Champions ahead of the closing date of the 2nd of December. Because what we really want to do is to have loads of nominations across all the four awards, which really represent the incredible values and talents that we have across all of our services. And of course, we want as many people represented across the services that the managers truly believe deserve these awards.

It’s definitely worth it in terms of what goes with the prize, because of course, it’s, I guess, our way of saying to people how much they are valued and that by going over and above in the values that they bring to life… It’s just our small way of saying how much we’re very grateful and how thankful we are for them.

Managers are asked to nominate a team member they believe exemplifies one of our four values of Integrity, Valuing Each Individual, Being Solution Focused and having a Consistent and Reliable Approach.

Before submitting their nomination, they should get approval from their ADs/Head of Department. So now is the time to get thinking about those nominations!

As a reminder, our  “CEO Values Champion” Awards are the top tier of our reward and recognition package. Our “Say Thanks” initiative runs each month in Compass Points giving the opportunity for team members to acknowledge great support and work from others.

More information on the schemes including the nomination process for “CEO Values Champion” can be found here U:\HR\Forms & Templates\Managers\MyCompass Awards

Don’t forget! Free flu jabs available for all staff

Compass is offering free vouchers for staff to get flu vaccines.

Staff should contact their managers for a voucher if they do not receive the jab through their GP.

SMT Report: Progress reviewed on big projects

At the October meeting SMT took the opportunity to review progress and action against the ongoing projects and programmes of work.

With all of the work on new service mobilisation in Derbyshire and Coventry, enhancing services and systems to support teams and practitioners to meet the increasing demand for services SMT acknowledged what a busy time it is for everyone at Compass but also recognised the progress being made against the organisation wide projects.

SMT reviewed progress on the data projects which has seen central services working closely with Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Services to develop EMIS and Specialist Services to develop and implement Theseus to improve the systems for ease of recording and reporting – a big thank you from SMT to everyone involved as these key projects are on plan to hit some significant milestones in October and November – SMT acknowledged the commitment and hard work of those involved to achieve a much more effective system.

SMT also spent some time reviewing plans for the expansion of existing services in Barnsley and Lancashire MHST’s which continue to be prepared and reviewed with commissioners for introduction over the next few months alongside confirming the pace and progress in delivering our plans for new contracts.

Charity Worker Discount

As prices rise in the shops, this may help…

Charity Workers and volunteer discounts and vouchers available for shopping,  travel, motoring, gym memberships, mobile phones, and utilities…

Those are eligible are charity staff, volunteers and office based staff to register all you need is your name, postcode and the charity you work for.

Click the image to learn more,

Don’t forget, you have a free confidential helpline.

Just click the image to access it…

OUR FREE and confidential EAP service 24 hour confidential helpline is available for advice on matters
such as financial wellbeing, consumer advice, family & relationship advice and confidential counselling sessions.
Access it via the App or Wellbeing Portal to My Healthy Advantage with the following login credentials:
Employer code: MHA180081.
Access the Wellbeing Portal
Username: Wellbeing
Password: HomeLineCard20

Refer a Friend Scheme
DO YOU KNOW someone who would like to work for Compass?
Would you like to earn some extra money by referring them?
We are running a six month trial for ‘Refer a Friend’ scheme whereby if you successfully refer a
friend, family member or known contact to Compass for a vacant role at either Job/salary grade
B1 & B2 or Clinician Scale A, B or C you can earn yourself a referral award!
You can find further information in the Refer a Friend Scheme Policy in the Policy Central drive.

Tell us all about the events you mark in your service

Awareness Days 2022

Upcoming in November…

awareness month
8thIntersex day of
13-19Trans awareness
14-21 Interfaith week
18-25Children’s Grief
Week UK
Men’s Day

If you mark any events and religious festivals in your services, please remember to share it with
Compass Points.
We know that services have already established events they mark which may not be on our calendar.
We’re really interested in hearing about all you do and aim to include your events in the overall calendar so it builds over time.

Tell us your news.

The Deadline for stories and pictures for the next issue is
Midday, Monday 21st November. Please send submissions with
Compass Points in subject line to