Leanne Walker, Expert by Experience

Leanne Walker@NHS from 13/02/17 to 17/02/17

Role: Expert By Experience / Young Person Consultant

Location: Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (CAMHS)

Twitter: @LeanneWallker

I’m 22 years old: a Keele University graduate with a First Class Honours in Criminology and Geography. However, my real passions are mental health, Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), service user participation, LGBT equality, innovation and anything creative.

I enjoy drawing and sharing iPad art based on my reflections and thoughts. I love to write (spoken word /poetry especially) and occasionally make videos on YouTube centred around my personal experiences! I know it can be powerful to know/feel you are not alone in what we have experienced.

My work journey started as a CAMHS service user when I was 15. If only I knew back then that all the difficulties and negatives I was experiencing would one day turn into positives!

Towards the end of my journey as a service users I got involved in Derby CAMHS Participation; this was a group where services users and ex services users worked together with the staff to improve the service. From this came so many amazing opportunities, locally, nationally and internationally.

I now work part time as an Expert By Experience in the same CAMHS I used as a teenager. I am a Young Advisor at The Royal College of Psychiatrists. I do sessional work for GIFT (Great Involvement Future Thinking), Common Room Consultancy and also Warwick University as part of the International project, MILESTONE. This is about improving transitions between CAMHS and Adult Mental Health Services (AMHS). I enjoy speaking at events about my personal experiences and working in groups to create something new or help to solve a problem.

At the heart of everything I do is my drive for myself to be better than I was yesterday and for the world to be better than it was yesterday.

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