AN inspirational Stourbridge nurse has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Katharine Bird has been recognised for her work to improve the lives of vulnerable young people being cared for in the Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust's inpatient unit in Erdington.

Since starting her career with the trust 15 years ago, Katharine has worked across a number mental health services, initiated projects to renovate outside space to be used for physical exercise and held weekly ‘Kat Chats’ with the young people on the wards to get feedback about how services could be developed to improve their experience.

“I am delighted and extremely proud to be made a Member of the British Empire in the Queen's Birthday Honours List," said Katharine, who is currently on maternity leave following the recent birth of her second child.

"Although my work is challenging, my aim is to ensure that the young people in my care have a positive experience of mental health services and that they are supported through their journey on the way to recovery.

"However, this support relies on the multi–disciplinary team involved and I would like to thank all the dedicated staff who work with me to meet the needs of challenging and vulnerable young people. Every day I observe staff giving 110 per cent to ensure that our young people and their families receive the support that they need."

She added: "I dedicate this award to everyone in our team and to the young people that we care for. Seeing the young people make progress within their recovery is the reward in itself.”

John Short, chief executive at the trust, said: “I was so delighted to hear that Katharine has been awarded this well-deserved honour. She embodies everything that is best in nursing.

"She is a strong, compassionate and effective leader who has created a culture where staff, service users and carers are truly involved, change is championed and people are encouraged to speak out and learn.

“I am particularly pleased that this honour goes to a colleague who works at the frontline of our services day-in day-out, providing the best quality care and inspiring others."