Providing accessible mental health information for a city

I was responsible for creating and delivering Mindwell – an award-winning online mental health guide for Leeds. I put together a team and led on strategy for user-centred design, combining knowledge, resources and materials from across city: the NHS, Leeds City Council and voluntary organisations.

 Elefriends home page


Key achievements

  • Winner of Patient Engagement Award sponsored by Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network 2017 for patient engagement.
  • Digital Leaders 100 list 2017 – one of the UK’s top digital accolades.
  • Plain English Award for the clarity and accessibility of the site and its resources.
  • 4,000+ thousand visits in the first three weeks.
  • Over a third were people coming back to the site.

My involvement

  • I developed the content strategy based on ongoing user research to ensure a human-centred approach
  • I pitched the project concept to a group of NHS senior stakeholders to get buy-in from the CCG
  • I put together and managed an Agile delivery team using a collaborative, dynamic planning process – prioritising the work against capacity and capability of multi-disciplinary teams.
  • I mentored the client team in participatory design as part a Digital Development Lab for NHS England.

 The strategy involved co-creation workshops with service users and mental health professionals across Leeds and interacted with well over 100 people.

The strategy involved co-creation workshops with service users and mental health professionals across Leeds and interacted with well over 100 people.


The research methodology involved developing 10 user personas based on research rather than assumptions.


Guided search

Based on user testing and research we found that locating relevant information was a big problem for most users. So we developed a self-help facility to guide potentially confused users through a serious of questions to help them in finding the most relevant information from the hundreds of resources available in the CMS. The search also signposts to over 100 local services.