Newcastle's NUFC Foundation helps bring Lucy back from 'rock bottom'
Diagnosed with juvenile arthritis in childhood, Lucy, 15, needed much medical attention growing up and it affected her mental health.
A nurse at the Great North Children’s Hospital suggested that she spend time with the foundation who, alongside the hospital have worked together to improve the lives of children and teenagers receiving care for more than four years.
The foundation helps youngsters with mental health guidance and one-to-one support to feel more like themselves, physically and mentally.
Lucy’s recovery started while playing golf with the foundation last year as part of her respite from care, which allowed her to experience something new while socialising.
While waiting for golf sessions to restart, Lucy has met with Helen McDermott from the foundation’s health and wellbeing team weekly for two months at a time when she most needed support.
Lucy said: “As soon as I spoke to the foundation, it was easier to talk about everything. It feels like I’m just able to open up fully and talk to them.
“Through working with the foundation, I am more laid back now and I get less stressed in situations that I used to get very stressed in.
“We talk about solutions, look at my point of view and also look at others’ point of view. It has really helped me to see things in another perspective.”
She added: “I used to struggle to be honest about how I felt, but now I like to ask others how they are. Sometimes I ask friends to open up to me, and I ask if they’re alright.
“The foundation has helped me and that made me want to help other people as well.”
Lucy’s mother, Claire, said: “The foundation has helped Lucy so much. The golf sessions couldn’t have come at a better time for Lucy. We were struggling to get her up on a morning during lockdown, she had really hit rock bottom.”
Helen McDermott said: “Lucy is a wonderful young woman and it’s an honour to work with her. Seeing her confidence grow and her true self shining through is fantastic.”