Acts of courage, bravery and heroism celebrated West Midlands Ambulance Service

The Staff Long Service & Excellence Awards and Excellence in the Community Awards were held at The Copthorne Hotel in Brierley Hill last week with more than 300 guests attending each ceremony.

Guests included the Deputy-Lieutenant of the West Midlands, Richard Boot OBE, and the High Sheriff of the County of West Midlands, David Moorcroft OBE.

This year, 19 members of staff were recognised for having given 20 years of service to WMAS, 9 staff were commended for 25 years’ service, four received certificates for 30 years’ service and one member of staff were honoured for 35 years in the Trust. Trust Chief Executive, Anthony Marsh, said:

“To have the chance to recognise the extraordinary efforts of our staff, volunteers and members of the public is extremely important.

“Throughout the awards ceremonies we heard many fantastic stories of people going above and beyond what is normally expected of them, all for the same reason, to provide the very best levels of care to our patients.

“I would like to say a big thank you and well done to all of our award winners, I am incredibly proud of all of them.”

Deputy-Lieutenant of the West Midlands, Richard Boot OBE, added: “It is an honour and privilege to be invited to events of this nature and to see the fantastic work done by ambulance staff and volunteers.

“It is reassuring that there are people such as these who do so many incredible things to keep us all safe. Without their dedication and resolve, the public would be much worse off.”

Winners included:

Integrated and Emergency Urgent Care Mentor of the Year – Lyndsey Parkes (based in Brierley Hill)

A call assessor for longer than five years, our IEUC Mentor of the Year took on the responsibility at the start of the pandemic of mentoring new 999 call assessors, something she did for a number of months, being flexible, accommodating and overall very supportive to the new staff and training team. She was always someone that the team could call on for help, with new and old staff for support, and has never turned down a request for help. Most recently during the new recruitment to IEUC, our winner has again stood up to support all of the new staff. She actively maintains contact with the team on her availability and flexibility to support new starters and the feedback received from staff is that the support she gives is fantastic, helping to build confidence with the feedback and guidance she offers.

Diversity and Inclusion Award – Ash Deakins (based at Dudley)

This year’s winner has a genuine interest in people and their inclusion, supporting staff both locally and nationally to embrace diversity and ensuring a platform is provided for staff to feel included within their ambulance hub. Described by many as a role model, our winner goes above and beyond to promote fairness in the workplace, promote a harmonious workplace that is an environment for everyone to be happy in their work and represents the Trust nationally, including within the National LGBTQ+ Network. The lead of the Trust’s LGBTQ+ Network, our winner promotes learning and awareness by arranging free access to online CPD for clinical staff to address the barriers that minority groups face when accessing health care.

Derek Chebsey - Community First Responder of the Year

This year’s winner joined FastAid Black Country in 2013 and ever since has always shown the highest degree of commitment to the role of the Community First Responder. He is currently the Chairperson of the Charity and conducts this appointment with true professionalism, always going above and beyond to support the Trust and his Community. A family man, he still finds time to mentor new members and acts as the co-ordinator for his scheme as well as holding a position on the Regional Forum, representing all CFR schemes operating in the Black Country. Despite all the Lockdown restrictions, he continued with his voluntary role and responded to emergency cases on behalf of the Trust. However, we must also thank him for everything he did during Covid in his paid role as an NHS Nurse.


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