In this guest blog, Breakthrough's Angie Russell encourages people to make their nominations for the forthcoming Positive Practice in Mental Health Awards.

As we all know, there is nothing better than to be appreciated. And what better way to show that than by nominating either an individual or service for one of this year’s Positive Practice in Mental Health Awards?

As service users who have been involved in the development of mental health service policy and delivery for almost 20 years now, we at Breakthrough have always concentrated our efforts on those who work in and around mental health, believing that if they are happy, well-motivated and feel appreciated for the effort they put in, then those they care for will receive a much better service. After all, it takes a special sort of person to dedicate their life to working in mental health in the first place, in our opinion. 

To this end, we decided to bring back the Awards last year, and were delighted and surprised at the great response we had with very little publicity – more than 250 nominations were received and nearly 200 people came along to celebrate all that is positive in mental health at the awards ceremony held in Sheffield last December.

This year, we extended the amount of award categories to 15, with three individual awards; making a difference, mental health administrator, and Time to Change's award for an individual fighting stigma.  

Meanwhile, our 12 team awards include some of the favourites from 2013: Patient Experience; Innovation in Mental Health in Primary Care; Mental Health and Criminal Justice; Partnership Working; Art, Mental Health and Wellbeing and Mental Wellbeing of Staff. There are also new categories, including: CAMHS, Older People, Improving Crisis Care, BME services, Integrating Physical and Mental Health Care, and Commissioning in Mental Health.

The closing date for nominations is May 30, so time is running out for entries. Entry is really simple and online forms can be accessed via our website Alternatively, you can email us at and we can send you the form.

The most important thing to remember when completing the nominations procedure is to give as much information as is asked for, in such a way that if you were reading the form and didn't know the person or service it was being written about, you would be enthusiastic and interested in what you were reading. Please try to avoid one word answers unless that is what is specifically asked for.  And then, hopefully, your nomination will have much more chance of success!

Shortlisted nominations will be notified by September 7. The ceremony will again be held at Sheffield United FC, Bramall Lane, Sheffield on the evening of Thursday, October 23. 

We would also like to thank our sponsors and supporters: NHS Employers, Picker Institute, Mental Health Today, HS Consultancy, Time to Change, King's Health Partners and NHSIQ.

Hope to see you there!