Specialist support from Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT) has helped more than 50 people into paid employment over the last year, despite the challenges of the pandemic.
The Trust’s Employment Support Service (ESS) provides vital advice, information and support to individuals who are seeking work and receiving care from LPT mental health services.
Peter Smith, who leads the team, said: “Securing paid work for service users, especially during a period of job uncertainty for many, has really helped to improve the wellbeing and recovery of the people we work with.”
One service user, Jonathan Hurley, was helped to secure work with a Third Sector supported housing provider to help residents live independently. Jonathan says his own experience of mental illness enables him to provide care and emotional support for residents with a mental health condition and/or learning disability.
He said: “In the past I have gone from job to job, but the employment support service helped me to find a more rewarding and long-term career path, where I can make use of my own lived experience and interest in social care and mental health.”
Jonathan’s line manager said: “Jonathan has worked well with the customers who suffer from mental health issues. He has been able to use his personal experiences to relate to what a customer might be going through. This has helped him to adapt how he communicates to customers.”
Jonathan speaks about his experience of using the LPT employment support service, and its positive impact on his own mental wellbeing in a short video:
Gordon King, LPT’s director of mental health, said: “The work of our employment support service is a vital part of our focus on recovery and improving lives and it is really positive to hear the individual stories of success either in obtaining or retaining paid employment, which is an important part of individual and community wellbeing.
“The pandemic has presented thousands of people with unprecedented physical and mental health challenges and we cannot understate the impact that losing or being worried about work can have on our sense of self-worth and purpose. We have been delighted to see the success of the service increase during lockdown, with more people than ever supported into paid employment or helped to maintain it.”
ESS takes referrals from LPT’s adult community mental health teams and self-referrals from LPT mental health service users. For more information about the service visit: https://www.leicspart.nhs.uk/service/employment-support-service/
NOTES TO EDITORS
- Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT) provides community health, mental health and learning disabilities services for the one million people living in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. We have a budget in excess of £275 million and employ approximately 5,500 staff. For more information visit: www.leicspart.nhs.uk. Our registered charity is called Raising Health (charity number 1057361). The charity fundraises to support excellent care initiatives, equipment and innovations which go above and beyond core NHS provision to enhance the experience of our patients, service users and staff. See www.raisinghealth.org.uk
For further information contact: Kartik.Bhalla@leicspart.nhs.uk