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Shirly Vijayakumar with Professor Michelle Marshall, Head of Medical Academic Unit and Dr Joanna Thompson, Departmental Director

Huge Congratulations to Shirly!!!

We were delighted that one of our students won the award for the student most impacted by their social accountability placement at the recent University Placement Thank You Event. We have been partnering with the University of Sheffield’s Medical Department since 2019, hosting 3rd year students carrying out a range of fantastic development projects for us.

This last year we hosted 7 students who carried out research projects for us on Kindness, Loneliness Benches, Menopause support, and Children’s Listening Services. Shirly and her co-student Dilini explored the value of our Sibling and Bereavement Services, and researched other gaps and needs for children needing support.

Shirly and Dilini presented their findings at the Medical Department’s Thank You Event, highlighting our charity’s work and showcasing the work of our Children’s Team. All of our students also take part in our Listening Training and they spoke highly of its value in informing their approach with patients. After the event, Shirly told me some of the benefits she had gained from working with SYCLS for her placement:

“By participating in the listening training provided by SYCLS, I gained valuable communication skills that I will continue using as a medical student and a future doctor. I also learned the great value of sitting in silence and allowing the individual to open up about things they would like to talk about. This has definitely enhanced my clinical skills as it has allowed me to understand patients holistically. I also began to understand the importance of the role charities play in filling in the gaps.” 

We are grateful to all of the students giving their time to work with us and are grateful for the opportunity to partner with the University’s medical department, providing an opportunity for medical students to explore social impact on health and wellbeing.

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