We’re delighted to introduce you to the newest member of the Mind Matters Initiative team, Lacey Pitcher. Lacey joins us as our Outreach and Engagement Senior Officer and will be involved with many of our ambitious and exciting projects for the year, including helping to create a new MMI training programme and leading on our student outreach and engagement.
Lacey grew up in a small town in South Wales surrounded by animals. Despite her initial plans to study Law, she decided to pursue a career in veterinary nursing. She started out as a kennel hand and worked her way up via three different nursing colleges and became a Registered Veterinary Nurse, in spite of chronic health challenges.
Lacey has worked in a variety of settings including emergency care and ICU, multidisciplinary referral, GP and charity practice and through these roles has built an extensive network within the veterinary community. Throughout her career, Lacey has explored the importance of connection and mental wellness and fulfilled a career goal by joining BVNA council in 2020.
Lacey is passionate about learning and personal growth, having launched her own wellbeing initiative a couple of years ago. The scheme, Veterinary Pay It Forward (VPIF) aims to spread kindness across the profession by asking people to nominate someone to receive an anonymously distributed care package as a way of showing their appreciation. The person who receives a package is then also encouraged to ‘pay the kindness forward’ by organising with VPIF for someone else to get care package. These can be anything from craft kits to candles – as long as it makes the recipient of the package smile.
Lisa Quigley, Mind Matters Initiative Manager, said: “We are delighted to have Lacey join the team. The MMI’s activities and upcoming projects will benefit immensely from her veterinary nursing expertise and her passion for supporting the profession’s wellbeing. One of our key strategy areas is to focus on improving the mental wellbeing of the veterinary nursing profession, and having Lacey’s insight into the needs of the profession and links with VNs will be a huge asset as we develop our mental health training and support for vet nurses.”
Lacey lives in the Cotswolds and enjoys time in the countryside in-between working on numerous projects. Lacey is passionate about widening participation in the veterinary profession and exploring career versatility, which are key aims for some of the RCVS’s and MMI’s projects. If you’re attending a freshers fair this year you’ll likely see Lacey on the MMI stand, so make sure to pay her a visit and find out more about how you can get involved with our work to improve the mental health and wellbeing of the veterinary team.