Counsellor based in Stoke Mandeville wins national award for her work caring for spinal injuries patients

Sarah Standish with her award
Sarah Standish with her award

Sarah Standish, a family counsellor at the National Spinal Injuries Centre at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, won the Rising Star category at the Spinal Injuries Association Rebuilding Lives Award on June 6.

Sarah tied with three other nominees who were also shortlisted in that category.

The Rising Star category recognises outstanding individuals who go above and beyond the scope of their role to care for people with spinal injuries.

Sarah said: “I was absolutely thrilled to be nominated.

“That alone was a real honour.

“It isn’t often that during your professional life you are recognised for your performance.

“The nature of my work with relatives of those newly spinally injured is very sensitive and private work.

“I often feel I work behind the scenes.

“I couldn’t do the work without the support of my clinical psychology colleagues and the broader multi-disciplinary team at the spinal unit.

“Being commended for my work is tremendously meaningful.

“I was truly touched and appreciative of the recognition.”

Sarah supports family members and friends in extreme distress following spinal cord injury.

She believes that inclusive family support is central to rehabilitation and that this facilitates the person with spinal cord injury’s adjustment and care.

She leads the National Spinal Injury Centre’s family work stream, seeking to integrate these values within all aspects of rehabilitation practice, and daily challenges and encourages others to do the same.

The Spinal Injuries Association Rebuilding Lives Award is an annual awards ceremony which celebrates people who make a significant difference to those with spinal cord injury.