100% Volunteers ♦ 5 Trustees ♦ 15 Volunteers ♦ Combined 20 years experience for the Facilitators
Wednesday Group Sessions (face to face with some online sessions)
Group Facilitators: Paul, Alastair, Phoebe, Natasha, Amelia, Ellena, Julie, Josie and Katie.
Thursday Group Sessions (face to face)
Group Facilitators: Paul, Alex, Courtney, Daisy, Ellena, Samina and Zafia.
After studying Early Childhood Studies at University, I had a career plan of wanting to be a teacher. I then was diagnosed with anxiety and everything changed, now I want to help people like me and understand more about anxiety
Volunteering at NPS means I can help others manage their emotions, relate and understand how strong people with anxiety are. I hope to help others and be a voice for those who to afraid to open up about their mental health
I am passionate about making mental health more understood and less of a stigma, especially in ethnic communities.
My tip for improving mental health, is walking! When I get overwhelmed with thoughts, I throw on a playlist full of mood boosting songs and go on a walk it does wonders for you mentally.
(Jul 2016 - present)
Paul was a No Panic Sheffield group member before becoming a facilitator. He had CFS in the past and has agoraphobia and general anxiety more recently. He cares for a parent with epilepsy. Paul facilitates because others in No Panic Sheffield in the past such as Lorien and Brendan have done the same for him.
Interesting fact - Paul believes philosophy is an important part of mental health, practices meditation, cycles, and walks.
I'm Julie, originally from Sussex, I moved to Sheffield as a student in the mid-90s, and after a decade or so away I returned to the city in 2012 and have settled here. I'm an HR Consultant and freelance Mental Health First Aid Instructor, also studying coaching.
I've started volunteering for NPS as I want to help support those living with mental health issues to have a safe space to talk about it without needing a diagnosis.
I'm passionate about reducing mental health stigma, educating people how to spot the signs of mental ill health and build resilience and coping strategies to keep mentally well.
My top tip is, there's no one size fits all solution, but talking through what you are feeling can really help, and self-care is not selfish. As the saying goes, you can't pour from an empty cup.
(Facilitator Oct 2017 - present, Volunteer Coordinator ... 2020 - present)
My name is Alastair, I am 30-years-old and am from Sheffield. I have facilitated over 50 sessions for NPS and have recently assumed the role of Volunteer Coordinator. Prior to volunteering, I attended NPS as a group member for two years. Previously a freelance events coordinator, I am currently working in NHS Learning Disabilities as an Administrator.
To me, volunteering at NPS means offering a safe space for people in times of crisis. It is a unique opportunity to share and absorb unique advice and insight which allows our group members to build on their mental health skills. Over the years, I have seen many members transform their lives, using the techniques and knowledge gained at sessions to improve their circumstances dramatically.
I’m a particular advocate for graded exposure techniques, a tough challenge at first but always beneficial when followed through. A programme of exposure therapy helped me enormously with my own General and Social Anxieties.
My top tip would be to practice self-compassion. We are often our own harshest critics and this is never beneficial to our mental wellbeing. Any step taken to aid recovery, no matter how trivial it may seem, can present an enormous challenge and we should celebrate every achievement we make on the way.
Hi, I'm Zafia. I moved to Sheffield from Birmingham 18 years ago. As an undergraduate I studied Psychology and fell in love with all things related to the mind. Currently I'm training to become a nurse and hopefully progress to working as a mental health nurse. In my spare time I'm an avid reader and I love rambling.
Volunteering at NPS is very personal to me as I have personal experience of close family members with mental health issues. Working with people in the community to better understand the complexities associated with mental health and to be able to help in any way possible is very important to me.
I'm passionate about mental health full stop. It affects every aspect of our lives and needs to be at the forefront of a healthy lifestyle. Often mental health issues, be they big or small are ignored or dismissed as irrelevant compared to physical ailments. I believe in a holistic approach to health, which is not possible without positive mental health.
My top tip would be to first focus on yourself. To detach yourself from everything, step back and breath. This can then lead to focusing on making time for yourself and working at your own pace. I find this gives me clarity and a sense of well-being. This could be taking time to go for a walk, reading, pampering yourself and just some quiet time on a park bench.
(June 2019- present)
Hi, I’m Phoebe. I enjoy reading, crafts and walking with my dog.
I originally came to no panic as a member for my social anxiety and have since transitioned into a facilitator position. Volunteering for no panic allows me to help people who have struggled with similar issues to myself in the same way that this charity once supported me.
I’m passionate about providing a safe space for people to talk about mental ill health both in no panic sessions and in the wider community through awareness raising.
I don’t think there is one, if there was I would be shouting it from the rooftops. However, I do think that it can be therapeutic to talk to others who have similar experiences. There is a strong sense of community at no panic, members support members just as well as facilitators do if not better and this can make you feel much less alone in the things you are going through.
Hi! I'm Katie, I'm 22 and am currently doing a masters in Developmental Psychology. Some of my favourite things are walks in the Peaks, dogs and reading!
Having suffered from anxiety I am excited to be involved in an organisation with a positive focus on mental health, and learning even more about this subject.
I am passionate about making sure everyone feels listened to, and promoting self care.
My top tip/strategy for improving mental health is to take time for yourself, slow down and breathe.
My name is Alex. I have a long experience of working in Health and Social Care with both adults and children. I am passionate about making a positive contribution towards the lives and experiences of the people around me.
Volunteering for NPS offers me a sense of fulfilment. Being involved in sessions provides me with an opportunity to learn from our members and develop my understanding of people’s lives experiences and methods of dealing with issues they experience. Through this learning I can then pass my knowledge on to other people I meet along the way.
I’m passionate about reducing the stigma associated to poor mental health. I want people to feel a sense of unity and belonging regardless of their experiences. There is no shame feeling the way you do. “It’s ok to not feel ok.” I encourage people to learn about mental health so that they develop the confidence to approach conversations with people affected by mental health experiences.
My top tip for improving your mental health is to surround yourself around those who care about you. Reach out to a friend when you’re not your 100, and spark up an irrelevant conversation which will bring you joy and happiness. Company of others has always had a great impact on my well-being.
I am originally from Toronto, Canada, where I completed an undergraduate degree in Psychology and have moved to Sheffield to work on a Master's degree in Clinical Neuroscience.
It means very much to me to be a part of an organization that is such an invaluable and much needed resource in the community.
I am passionate about learning more about the experiences of others in terms of mental health and how they view the world. It means a lot to me to help those who experience anxiety or depression whenever I can. I have hopes of becoming a clinical psychologist in the future.
My top tip would be to express yourself, whether it is talking through your feelings with others or expressing feelings through journaling or art.
I’m Sara! I was born in Dubai and moved to Sheffield to do my undergraduate degree in Psychology. After finishing my undergraduate degree, I made the big move to London to undertake a master’s course. I have been volunteering for No Panic Sheffield for over three years now.
I initially was drawn to No Panic Sheffield because of its focus to provide the community with a safe space to share their experiences on their mental health journey.
To me, volunteering at NPS is being able to give back to the community and connect with likeminded individuals. I am passionate about reducing mental health inequalities and tackling the stigma surrounding mental health.
My top tip/strategy for improving mental health, is to never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep and treat yourself like you would want to be treated.
My name is Daisy and I am a Volunteer Group Facilitator. I am from Newcastle originally but I moved to Sheffield almost 3 years ago to complete an undergraduate degree in Psychology.
Volunteering with No Panic Sheffield is something I am so excited about. It is a lovely thought that people may leave our sessions feeling heard, understood, and supported.
One thing I feel passionately about is that stigma around mental health needs to be eliminated. While this is improving, there is a lot more that can be done to help people feel less isolated with their concerns. No Panic is fantastic in this regard as there is no waiting list and no need for a diagnosis. Anyone can come along to any session and leave feeling less isolated and more understood.
My top tip for coping with anxiety and/or depression is to talk about it with someone you trust will understand. While this is often a scary step to take, talking to the right person about it brings such a welcome feeling of relief. A problem shared is a problem halved, and at No Panic Sheffield, we are here to halve as many problems as we can.
Hi, my name is Josie, I’ve been studying psychology in Sheffield for four years, but I’m originally from Bristol.
Volunteering at NPS has been a great opportunity for me, I find it so fulfilling talking with the other volunteers and members, and creating an open and supportive space to talk about mental health. I enjoy helping others and feel like I gain a lot from the sessions too.
I’ve always been passionate about talking openly about mental health from personal experiences, it’s so important to break the stigma and help people to get the support they need.
My top tip for helping with mental health is always to talk to someone close, I think sharing how you feel is the best thing you can do for yourself.
Hi, I’m Courtney! Volunteering at No Panic Sheffield is very important to me, I believe that community support programs are vital to community health, now more than ever. I am passionate about supporting people to feel comfortable in themselves and in the world around them.
My top tip is to make some time for yourself every day, self-care is vital to good health.
NPS Volunteers & Trustees
Volunteer Co-ordinator: Alastair (2020-present) Awareness Raising Volunteers: Volunteers needed
Media and Marketing Volunteer: Sarah P Website Volunteer: Zoe (2020-present)
(Facilitator Nov 2013-Jul 2018, March 2020-present; Trustee May 2018- present)
Lorien has been a volunteer facilitator at No Panic Sheffield for the past seven years. Born in Sheffield she thoroughly enjoys living in this great city. Lorien graduated in Psychology and has worked in various roles in Mental Health all her life. She currently works as a Specialist Skills Pathway Facilitator for a charity where she supports those with Autism Spectrum Disorders and related mental health conditions, progress towards finding work, which she really enjoys.
She began volunteering for No Panic Sheffield as she felt, after IAPT intervention, there was little available in the local area for people with anxiety, low mood and OCD to access. No Panic Sheffield has the same ethos as her own and she wanted to be part of that and to help members progress towards taking control of their lives again. Also, she has a family who are affected by these issues and she thought her personal experience was something she could offer.
Having been at No Panic Sheffield for several years now, volunteering means a great deal to her. She has enjoyed meeting new people, seeing members grow in confidence over time and learn new coping skills. She has also had the opportunity to learn new ways in managing anxiety, which she can share with the group.
Interesting fact - she enjoys travelling, walking her Cavalier King Charles and spending time with her daughter, Freya.
(Trustee 2019 - present)
I have been volunteering for No Panic Sheffield since 2016. Originally from Birmingham, I moved to Sheffield 7 years ago to study Psychology at Undergraduate and Masters level.
I am mostly interested in how mental health affects different people, and have done projects on how different people are affected by the internet, and how different people react to weight gain. I was diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder in 2015, and embarked on lots of research, self-help books, and online articles about how to cope with this new, complicated way of life. At the same time I have always been interested in mental health and have dreams of becoming a Psychologist one day. That, and my odd love of public speaking meant that facilitating at No Panic Sheffield was a no-brainer - I am still so glad to have been taken on.
For me, volunteering is not only work experience, it's a commitment to your co-volunteers and your group members. It's about learning something new about someone every session, and learning about yourself.
Interesting fact - I have a really good long term memory and can quote most of my favourite films and TV programmes off by heart. Can't remember what I had for lunch earlier though! I also enjoys reality TV, eating sweets and hugging cats.
(2010 - present, trustee 2013-present)
Website volunteer 2020-present
(2017 - present, Facilitator 2018-2019, Trustee 2019-present)
See above. Paul has done roles from facilitator, volunteer coordinator to trustee (various).