A MALTON-based community mental health support worker has scooped a top award at an NHS award ceremony.

Julie Stroughair, who works at Princess Road, won the coveted chairman’s unsung hero award at the Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys (TEWV) NHS Foundation Trust Making a Difference Awards 2013 ceremony.

Held at the Thistle Hotel, Middlesbrough, the ceremony saw 20 individuals and teams pick up awards across ten categories. 191 nominations were received for this year’s awards with forty nominees being shortlisted for the final.

The awards ceremony was compered by BBC presenter Peter Grant and awards handed out by Trust chief executive Martin Barkley and Trust chairman Jo Turnbull, attending her last Making a Difference Awards in her capacity as chairman before retiring at the end of March.

According to colleagues who nominated her for the award, Julie is a real superstar who ‘should be on a repeat prescription'.

Described as dedicated, selfless and compassionate, Julie’s ability and willingness to go the extra mile every day to improve the lives of her patients, their carers and other colleagues is very evident. Receiving not one, but two very strong nominations embedded with examples of TEWV Trust values in action made Julie a clear choice as this year’s chairman’s unsung hero award winner.

Julie said: “I am over the moon to have won this award. I love my job and it’s made so enjoyable by the wonderful people I visit. It’s not so much about what I bring to my patient’s lives, it’s more about making them see what they’ve got to offer.”

Jo Turnbull, Trust chairman, said: “It’s always a pleasure to read the nominations for the chairman’s unsung hero category and this year was no exception. Julie was a clear choice as this year’s winner as she really lives and breathes our Trust values and puts other people’s interests first and foremost.”

Martin Barkley, chief executive of Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Trust, said: “The Making a Difference Awards is our way of formally recognising the hard work and commitment of staff across the trust. We have a wonderful team of people in place who work hard to improve people’s lives by minimising the impact of mental ill health or learning disability. It was my pleasure to be able to meet the winners and personally thank them for their continued achievements.”