AMH New Horizons Foyle hosted a visit from Martin McGuinness dFM, and Martina Anderson, the Junior OFMDFM Minister on 29th June 2011, where they acknowledged the remarkable steps clients have made on the road to recovery by presenting certificates to recent graduates of the ‘New Horizons’ program. In total 55 clients were presented with their certificates for a range of qualifications and subjects by the Deputy First Minister, including Rachel Reid who has been named CCEA’s learner of the year. It was also an opportunity for the audience to hear from AMH client, Billy Henderson on his experience of living with mental ill health and how his life has been transformed by then training and self development opportunities at AMH.
David Babington, CEO of AMH, welcomed everyone to the event and thanked the dFM and junior minister for their support. Martina Anderson then talked about mental health issues in the Foyle area and the relationship she has forged with AMH. Mickie Harkin, Foyle service manager, then invited Martin McGuiness to present the certificates. The Deputy First Minister was pleased to be reaquainted with some old friends and talked about how proud he was of all the clients, and how they were a inspiration to others. Other special guests included Bernard McAnaney, Assistant Director WHSCT, who praised the work of AMH, saying most importantly it offered clients a sense of purpose, he also acknowledged the partnership the Trust has had with Foyle New Horizons for over 20 years. Also present were Raymond McCartney MLA, many local employers, and representatives from the University of Ulster and local colleges.
Martin McGuiness was presented with a momento of his visit – a piece of tiffany glass depicting the oak leaf, the River Foyle, and the new Peace Bridge. He said it would have pride of place in his office at Stormont and it would remind him of home and Action Mental Health.
All the guests were then shown round the service before sitting down for lunch.