The Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families nurse wins national award for outstanding service

30th May 2014 By: Rose Palmer

Julia Gibson-Cranch from the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families has been recognised for transforming the care of some of the most vulnerable and socially excluded parents in society. 

Julia Gibson-Cranch, who has dedicated her career to child and adolescent mental health, received a national award for outstanding service from the Queen’s Nursing Institute at a ceremony on the 12th May.

 The accolade recognises Julia for her role in helping to set up and run the Centre’s Early Years Parenting Unit (EYPU) for parents with personality disorders whose young children are at risk of being taken into care.

The Unit, which is the only one of its kind in the UK, supports parents who experience extreme mood swings, depression and problems with intimacy, and often engage in self-destructive behaviour. The families also often struggle with poverty, domestic violence and substance abuse.  

Currently the EYPU only takes families referred by Islington, Camden and Hackney Children’s Social Care services. Despite this, Julia’s work has made such an impact that she received the Queen Mother award from the Queen’s Nursing Institute. This award is presented to nurses who have given exceptional service to patients through practice in any aspect of primary health care.

Julia Gibson-Cranch said last night:  “It’s an honour to have my work recognised, but it’s the families I work with who often have nowhere to turn that I want people to remember. I’ve seen some truly tragic stories during my last two decades of work, but I’ve also seen some amazing results when it just didn’t seem possible. If anything, I hope this award will focus others to see why we need to support families who struggle with personality disorders across the UK not just in London.” 

You can listen to an interview with Julia on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour.