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Berkshire Healthcare shortlisted for prestigious HSJ award

HSJ awards 2023

We’re incredibly proud to announce that our BRAVE service (Building Resilience and Valuing Emotions after Domestic Abuse) has been shortlisted for the HSJ awards in the Mental Health Innovation of the Year category.

The HSJ Awards shines a light on the outstanding efforts and successes of individuals and teams across the NHS. To be shortlisted for the awards is a momentous achievement.

Working in partnership with the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, BRAVE offers psychological support for people across Berkshire who have experienced domestic abuse.

About the BRAVE programme

The BRAVE programme started as a 12-week programme for women which covered topics such as the function of emotions, low mood, anxiety, distress tolerance, building resilience, healthy relationships, and values.

Graduates of this programme felt they missed the connection of the group and so BRAVE EMBRACE was created, a co-produced peer group based on therapeutic community principles, where BRAVE graduates can consolidate their skills and continue to receive support for up to two years. A pathway was also created for those who completed BRAVE EMBRACE to become BRAVE Ambassadors, trained volunteers who continue to promote domestic abuse awareness.

The service also found there was a great need for developing a programme for men, which led to BRAVE Too, a specialised offer for men who have been in abusive relationships and experienced psychological and emotional difficulties.

Dr Jane Barker, Team Lead said: “BRAVE started by offering support to female victims of domestic abuse, but ended up with a comprehensive psychological offer as a result of the need we found in our communities.”

Natasha Berthollier, Consultant Psychologist said: “To be shortlisted for our work by the HSJ is a huge honour, and reflects how we have continued to evolve, responding to people’s needs, providing a vital tool for domestic violence victims in Berkshire.”

A BRAVE member said:

“As is the nature of domestic abuse, sometimes it’s impossible to completely escape contact or some connection to your past life especially if you share children with a former partner, but a support network and the vital information they bring helps you move on.”

The winners will be announced at the annual HSJ Awards on 16 November. 

Find out more

The full list of nominees for the 2023 HSJ awards can be found here: Home | HSJ Awards