Thursday, 27 September 2012

An Inspiring Profession

On Monday the SHOUT Team helped support a listening event hosted by the Trent Regional Group of the British Association of Occupational Therapists at Sheffield Town Hall, focusing on membership engagement. As the day came to a close and the rainy night drew in, we sat around the vast table in the conference room talking and feasting on the left over cakes and sandwiches.

Naomi Hankinson, Chair of Council at the College of Occupational Therapists, posed the question: what inspired us all to choose occupational therapy? And so, one by one, we shared our personal stories of how we came to OT and the people or events that had moved us...

Both myself and another student felt a shiver run down our spine as we heard the OTs talk about how they had been drawn to a profession that made such a positive difference in people's lives. Some came from healthcare backgrounds, others had been school students who simply knew that they wanted to help people - all valued the practical way that OT could help people live and enjoy their lives. For those of us around the table that were students, we had varied reasons for choosing OT from the inventive ways an OT can help someone with a physical disability to the mentoring role an OT takes with people with mental health problems, piecing lives back together step-by-step.

Why didn't several of the students pick physiotherapy instead of OT, Naomi asked? A response came back: because OT is more beautiful. 

Treating a person as the unique, extraordinary person that they are, respecting the valuable place they have in society, and enabling that person to do what it is they choose to do is so human and so beautiful. Occupational therapy, more than any other profession it would seem, allows people to live, beautifully. What an inspiring path we have chosen.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Today! SHOUT's First Evening Seminar of the Academic Year

We're back! Autumn brings a new term and a new schedule of SHOUT events. We've worked hard over the summer to pull together a varied line-up of talks by academics and health and social care professionals.

Later today SHOUT holds the first evening seminar of the academic season with Bob Collins on "Recovery Themes in Mental Health".

Come and join us in the Mary Badlands Theatre at our Collegiate Campus from 6-7.30pm, meet students and local clinicians and hear Bob's experiences of working as a Recovery Co-ordinator at Bradford and Airedale Early Intervention Team.

The session will explore the holistic and personalised nature of recovery and the important role of occupational therapy in facilitating social reconstruction. Bob's work focuses on optimising social and occupational recovery for young people following a first episode of pyschosis. A locally developed tool, presented at this year's COT Conference in Glasgow, will be introduced as a structure for the OT process; the "LifeChart" is an assessment, goal setting and action planning tool which emphasises a strengths-based and solutions-focussed approach, as well as providing evidence of personalised recovery outcomes.

Not to be missed!
Registration and refreshments open at 5.30pm.
Entry is £2 for students and BAOT members. Email the SHOUT team to book a seat: or just turn up tonight!

And that's not all....."Wind Down Wednesday" takes place afterwards at The Botanical pub on Eccelsall Road: drinks and an opportunity to reflect on the session. Thoughts are tweeted to our SHOUT followers and a wider audience.

See you there!

Sunday, 23 September 2012

BAOT Listening Event at Sheffield Town Hall

Come down to Sheffield Town Hall on Monday 24th September (tomorrow!) to share your views and ideas on how occupational therapists can engage with the British Association of Occupational Therapists and develop a strong professional community.

This free listening event, hosted by the Trent Regional Group of the BAOT, will help you to explore why you should become a member of the BAOT and how you can get the most from your membership.

Drop in anytime from 12.30 - 7pm tomorrow to pick up information and speak to the Trent Regional Team and the COT Chair of Council, Naomi Hankinson.

The SHOUT Team will be supporting the event, so come and chat to us about our student-led group and find out how we promote OT and the BAOT. Our first evening seminar of the academic year begins this week on 26th September on our Collegiate Campus in the Mary Badlands Theatre from 6 -7.30pm. The talk is led by Bob Collins on Recovery Themes in Mental Health. Seats are booking up fast, so contact the SHOUT team at to make sure you don't miss out! As always, refreshments are served from 5.30pm, and certificates of attendance will be presented at the end. We look forward to seeing you at both events!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Hello First Years!

The world of occupational therapy welcomes 44 new students on 17th September 2012 at Sheffield Hallam University.

The new first years had a taste of the OT course today at a pre-enrollment day, trying their hand at crafts such as marzipan fruit making and experiencing equipment used by OTs to help people live more independently.

SHOUT was there to welcome students and run sessions about our student-led group. SHOUT is by students for students and is a great way for new and existing students to have fun promoting OT, network with local practising OTs and boost CPD by attending our evening talks. And of course, we were excited about giving away our stripy green goodie bags!

It was fantastic to meet the aspiring OTs, play some games, (eat lots of sweets!) and talk about SHOUT. We were keen to explain how our group can benefit students, how to get involved and how enjoyable the next three years at Hallam will be.

And then it was time to say goodbye, but not before all the students had picked up their little bags full of information about SHOUT and BAOT, freebies and treats...

We wish them every success with their course and look forward to seeing them on campus as fully fledged first year OTs in two weeks time! Congratulations, from all of the SHOUT team.