Health receptionist brings smilesto patients with colourful displays

A receptionist working in Hastings Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is creating themed displays for a waiting area to be enjoyed by staff, families and visitors.

Dominic Cockerton SUS-180420-110058001
Dominic Cockerton SUS-180420-110058001

Dominic Cockerton, who works as a Receptionist and Team Clerical Officer at the St Anne’s Centre in Hastings, has made it his personal mission to make the waiting area more inviting.

The waiting area at the St Anne’s Centre, which is run by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, was relatively plain until receptionist Dominic decided to make some changes. The centre provides specialist mental health services to children and young people.

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Dominic said: “I like to give everyone a warm welcome when they come through the door. A lot of our service users feel very nervous when they first arrive at CAMHS and I wondered what I could do to help them to feel more relaxed.

“When I started in December 2017 I noticed that there wasn’t much colour in the reception, but there was an empty space on my desk with a window. So it started with a vase of flowers, and from there it has grown into bigger themed displays, such as for the Winter Olympics and Valentine’s Day.

“I really enjoy my job and getting to work with such friendly and helpful people, so I am really pleased to be able to give something back and lift other people’s mood too!”

Ann-Marie Skarstam, Lead Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist for Hastings CAMHS, said: “We are so impressed with the initiative that Dominic has taken in his role to really brighten the day of all the staff and families who come to the St Anne’s Centre, and we have received some really positive comments from visitors who have enjoyed the displays.

“Having only recently joined the team, Dominic has made a hugely positive impact on all of us with his cheerful personality and dedication. We are going to be installing a photo board to display all of the previous themed windows that he has made, so that everybody can continue to enjoy them.”

Dominic has also recently been named Carnival Sea King for Hastings and will represent the town at events.

Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides mental health services for adults and children in Sussex.

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