What being an Occupational Therapist means to me

As part of Occupational Therapy Week 2017, we have been asking some of our 167 occupational therapy staff what being an OT means to them.

Claire Smith is a Lead Occupational Therapist at St Andrew's Healthcare, working in our Child and Adolescent (CAMHS) pathway, helping young people in our care reach their potential.

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I am an occupational therapist and today I…

"I helped a young person reach her goal of discharge, by restoring confidence in her own skills and abilities, and motivation to build a life worth living.

"My role has seen me assist in the growth of the young person’s sense of occupational identity through developing her work skills ready for her future voluntary work placement, and hobbies and interests in music, art and sports.

"I have helped the young person build her life skills in being able to cook independently in preparation for moving into her new flat and enabling her to build confidence in using community resources and facilities.

"The young person has been empowered to reach her hopes and dreams of moving back to her local area and getting the kitten she has desperately wanted for so long.

"Today, and every day, I help someone reach their potential."

What does Occupational Therapy mean to me?

"Occupational Therapy, for me, is about how I use occupation to enable people to achieve health, self-esteem and wellbeing.

"Occupational Therapy involves empowering a young person to reach their personal recovery goals through enabling them to engage in purposeful and meaningful occupations. And using occupation as a therapeutic medium to develop a young person’s motivation, pro-social roles, routines and skills in every day activities, our every day occupations."

Join in the conversation on social media using #OTWeek2017 - be loud and proud about Occupational Therapy.

Read more: What being an OT means to me - Victoria Bayes