Jack Petchey Leaders Awards


Helen Murphy

Helen is a very respected and valued member of the Kool Carers staff team. Helen has and still does provide exceptional therapeutic support to many of our young carers, and their family members. A number of the young carers who Helen supports have special educational needs. Helen always manages to think outside the box, the different approaches she utilises enables the young carers to have a voice and be heard, this is crucial for young carers who are living with autism, in a world where they feel no-one outside of their family truly understands them. Helen will support the CEO in advocating for young carers and their families with education establishments, to ensure that there is a plan in place to support the young carer’s education and emotional well-being. Helen continued to work throughout the pandemic, one parent, with a diagnosis of complex bipolar, faced multiple challenges. Helen and the CEO took it in turns to contact the parent daily, in addition Helen provided counselling support weekly to the parent, which allowed her to stay at home safely, united with her family, which was her wish, instead of being sectioned and detained in hospital. Another parent, with bipolar has commented that she has had years of counselling since she was 9 years old, but the therapy she received from Helen as an adult, was the most effective she had ever received, which enabled her to be the parent that she had always dreamed of being to her two children. Helen also supports in facilitating the young carers groups, she is extremely creative and will always endeavour to make the sessions fun. Young carers attending Kool Carers provision, all believe Helen is so deserving of this award and recognition, she is highly respected by staff and young carers alike.
How You Have Involved Young People
From the comments that are written on the evaluation forms that we have received from parents, carers and young carers, it is clearly evident that the support Helen provides has and still is so incredibly invaluable to our beneficiaries.

Crystal Osullivan 

Crystal is employed by Kool Carers as a qualified counsellor and sessional worker. Her passion, dedication and enthusiasm for the charity and the work she undertakes is truly inspiring. Crystal lives with her own chronic health condition, where she can experience debilitating pain and restricted mobility and yet she will ALWAYS go the extra mile, offering her time to support and raise awareness of the charity and its work. Crystal always has a smile to share and her amazing sense of humour is infectious. Crystal has the ability to always think outside of the box and will adapt her approach according to the needs of the individual that she is supporting. We have had young carers specifically ask for Crystal to support them in their therapeutic journey because she is so approachable, empathic and kind. Crystal has demonstrated that she is very well respected by young carers and staff alike, she is a very valued member of the Kool Carers staff team.
How You Have Involved Young People
The young carers in the groups that Crystal helps to facilitate all feel Crystal is extremely deserving of this award, in addition to the Kool Carers staff team and trustee board.