Helping our participants thrive with workplace mental health support

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With more than 75 years’ experience in the employability sector, we understand the concerns and challenges faced by many.

Through our delivery of the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service, our specialist advisors are on hand to provide nine months of confidential and tailored mental health support to help employees and apprentices with a mental health condition to stay in or return to work.

Amy Newell, from Bournemouth, had recently moved away from home and started work as an in-house graphic designer, however, she struggled to adjust to her new work environment.

Experiencing anxiety about the work she was producing and her ability to do her job effectively, Amy, 32, suffered a mental health relapse, which she had first experienced in her teens. As her situation at work worsened, she was referred to the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service, for further help.

Amy explained: “I didn’t feel I was performing at my best in my previous role, and I think that this got stuck in my head when I changed jobs. I began to feel easily overwhelmed and anxious about the work I was producing.

“I was experiencing a lot of self-doubt, which led to the slippery slope into depression. I was in a dark place and didn’t have any perspective. I built it up into something toxic and everything became this perpetual cycle that was getting out of control.”

She began fortnightly support sessions with Vocational Rehabilitation Consultant (VRC), Alison McCausland.

“I’ve recently discovered that I’m neurodiverse and an element of that is feeling all these emotions. Alison taught me to step back from my situation, and not blame myself; I immediately felt that she was speaking my language. She didn’t tell me what direction to go in, she gave me permission to just travel and see where it takes me and that she would be there to help me.”

During regular sessions with her VRC, Amy established that work and being creative were key to improving her mental wellbeing. She explained: “Alison shared resources with me which provided me with the skills to proactively rebuild myself, giving me a safe space to explore. I knew work would be the key to improving my mental health and Maximus helped me do that and reclaim my independence.”

Alison added: “It’s great to see how far Amy has come since being referred to the service. She’s in a much better place than she was at the start and continues to work on self-care. This has had a positive impact upon her mental health.”

Following her return to work, Amy continues to receive support from Alison when required, and is even looking to set up her own graphic design business.

10 May, 2024