We were invited to present as guest speakers at the Merseycare conference in November. There was about 200 professional attending the conference. Tracy and Cheryl talked about their life stories, their mental health issues and the impact (both good and bad) that health services have had on their mental health.
The stories were very personal and hard hitting, some people in the audience cried when they heard what Tracy and Cheryl had to say.
Tracy said “I had never stood up in front of so many people before. I did not know if I would have the confidence to do it but I did. It made me happy to do it even though I was telling a sad story. I did have tears in my eyes. It was brilliant doing it. I thought it was fantastic when people came to me afterwards to thank me for telling my story. It was really nice of them to do it, it gave me more confidence and made me feel proud to think that my story would make such a difference.”
Patrick said “It was very interesting, getting all the people to sing was really positive. It makes people aware of People First Merseyside and what we are all about.”
Cheryl said “I thought I couldn’t cope presenting in front of that many people but I was really proud of myself. People told me I was amazing, I didn’t know what to say. I was speechless because no one has told me that before. I never used to be able to get my words out and now I can, it’s all thanks to People First Merseyside.”
Sarah said “I felt good, I was watching the people in the audience, they were enjoying themselves but they were shocked by the stories we told.”
Lesley said “It was good doing sign language, I was nervous but it was amazing when everyone stood up and clapped. If People First Merseyside wasn’t her I would be lost.”
Phil said “To be invited to the Merseycare conference was great, I felt privileged to see people learning who we are and what we do.”
Siobhan said “It’s been exciting. I nearly cried because Tracy and Cheryl’s stories are very similar to mine. It was exciting and nervous on the stage doing sing and sign
After our presentation, the rest of our members stood up to give a sing and sign session. Unfortunately the Merseysigners could not be there but we want to thank them for teaching us the songs and signs. The people at the conference loved it and we got a standing ovation after we sang Roar.
A member of the audience said “That was fantastic, it was the best bit of the conference. you were all amazing.”
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