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18th March, 2021 |

5 minutes

"I hope the caring, feisty and fun person I am continues to shine through."

Amber Hindle

Amber is a customer who lives in one of our mental health services in the midlands

I’m half Ethiopian, half British and have had a clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia since I was a teenager, spending almost eight years in and out of hospitals.

Once I left hospital I became very paranoid, would relapse and end up in hospital again; it was a vicious cycle.

Life changed when I was offered a respite bed at a Home Group service with additional support; moving into Aviary House saved my life.

I heard about Home Group’s involvement activities and thought I would give it a go. Over the last 12 months, I’ve been involved in all sorts; from going out and about on customer promise assessments, to equality and diversity workshops, the regional viewpoint team, fire safety groups and most recently speaking at an external conference – it’s been an inspiring year. I was wonderfully shocked and humbled to win a special recognition award from Home Group for all my hard work; I’m still a bit speechless about it!

Being involved has helped me loads. I wasn’t able to walk to the end of the street without support; now I’m travelling independently all over the UK. I’ve been to London, Leeds and even Newcastle to talk to Home Group’s board members; something that’s really given me back my confidence.

I’ve also managed to stay out of hospital for a whole year – something I’m really proud of.

My parents are my role models; they have been together for 40 years, survived all sorts of personal struggles but have supported me and taken the time to research my condition and learn what they can do to help me.

I’m looking forward to continuing my involvement with Home Group; I hope the caring, feisty and fun person I am continues to shine through.

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