Several GP practices in Birmingham and Solihull now have Social Prescribing Link Workers who are based at the surgery.
Link Workers give people time, focusing on what matters to each person, and looking at the bigger picture. As well as providing a listening ear, they use their local knowledge and networks to connect people to community groups and statutory services for practical and emotional support. The service is confidential and free.
Senior Link Workers
Anita Ward comes to Gateway after five years in a managerial role for a community charity in Birmingham and now manages the Social Prescribing Link Worker teams.
Anita says: “Social prescribing is vital. It means that people who would have previously fallen through the net because their issues weren’t medical are now able to get help and support for social and economic matters such as housing and social isolation.”
Birmingham Link Workers
Chanel Lawes has over five years’ community support experience, including helping ex-offenders in supported accommodation to prepare for independent living. Empathetic and calm, Chanel is a good listener and easy to talk to.
Chanel says: “I have a genuine desire to empower others, and to encourage people to achieve their potential.”
Cristina Pinero Maese combines practical problem solving skills with a caring approach. Working on a number of grass roots projects in Balsall Heath over the last 15 years has given her a good insight into her community and the problems people face.
Cristina says: “The opportunity to make a real and lasting difference to someone is a powerful incentive to me.”
Rangit Kaur comes to Gateway from Walsall’s Urgent Care Centre where she was a Team Leader, providing clinical staff with a high standard of support. She is a fluent Punjabi and Hindi speaker and understands Urdu.
Rangit says: “Healthcare should be holistic. I am looking forward to supporting individuals who need access and guidance to support in the community.”
Sadaf Raja has worked in the voluntary sector for ten years, including working in services focused on recovery, social groups and talking therapies. Warm and compassionate, she listens to people to understand what matters to them the most.
Sadaf says: “This role is an exciting opportunity to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team and help individuals to find a sense of belonging.”
Solihull Link Workers
Leah Crawford previously worked with people with dual diagnoses of mental health and learning disabilities, using a holistic, positive approach to help people build their confidence and wellbeing. She’s looking forward to bringing this experience to Gateway.
Leah says: “I am excited to work with a new team, supporting people to reach person-centred goals and live a more fulfilled life by empowering themselves.”
Lisa Cooper has five years’ health care experience, predominantly in primary care, but she’s also a mother who has accessed local services. She understands how to treat individuals as a whole person, not only clinically but by listening and offering advice, help and support.
Lisa says: “I am excited and looking forward to helping people access local resources to aid their social independence.”