Launching our mental health and employment trailblazer
New help is available for people with mental health needs such as anxiety or depression to find stable work as part of their recovery. The West London Alliance Mental Health and Employment Trailblazer service, will launch this week in Brent, the service will also be available in Barnet, Harrow, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Ealing and Hammersmith & Fulham until December 2018.
This innovative new service will integrate employment support with talking therapies to help residents find sustainable work in their chosen field of employment. It will improve the quality of residents’ lives and enable them to be more independent.
Trailblazer is one of four pilots across England testing how well an employment support intervention called Individual Placement Support (IPS) works for people with anxiety and depression. IPS has a good evidence base showing that it is very effective for people with severe and enduring mental health problems.
Here at Twining Enterprise we have a long history of supporting people with mental health needs in London to gain and sustain employment. The trailblazer programme is being delivered partnership with Central & North West London NHS Foundation Trust (CNWL) and the Centre for Mental Health. Twining and CNWL are both centres of excellence for providing IPS services.
Many referrals to the service will come from Jobcentre Plus or the talking therapy services but referrals will be encouraged from social workers, GPs and other professionals.
The West London Alliance is taking forward this pilot on behalf of the London LEP. Trailblazer is funded largely via the Department for Communities and Local Government, the European Social Fund and Jobcentre Plus and will be part of a national evaluation.
Paul Najsarek, CEO of Ealing Council and Chair of the West London Alliance Health and Employment Board said “I am delighted we are able to pilot this innovative service for our residents with common mental health needs. There has been too little effective help for too long. This pilot will help us understand what works. The integration of employment support with other services heralds the way forward for the future.
In the Spring of 2017, we expect a similar service, funded via the Big Lottery, to start in other wards in all seven West London Boroughs. These services will be in addition to existing employment support services and it is hoped that working closely with talking therapies services will reduce the social care costs for councils offering the service.
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This service is delivered in partnership with Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, European Social Fund and London Councils.