A group of mental health service users from South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are celebrating after achieving a range of training qualifications as part of a scheme to help them get back into work.
Certificates were presented to the group of 14 people, who have used the Trust’s mental health services in Barnsley, after they completed courses in food hygiene and food safety, risk assessment, and health and safety as part of the Trust’s Employment Pathway scheme.
The scheme enables service users to gain valuable knowledge and experience to support their personal employment goals and recovery. As well as completing qualifications, the people supported by the programme have honorary appointments in the Trust and undertake all the mandatory training that goes with the post. Placements are offered at the Oakwell Café at Kendray Hospital, or Moorland Court Resource Centre, Barnsley. The Trust also supports people in community settings and is developing further opportunities to help individuals back into work.
Denise Marsland, senior support time and recovery (ST&R) worker who runs the scheme, said, "The Employment Pathway programme provides an excellent opportunity for service users to gain useful qualifications and work experience that will help them back into paid employment. "Many of the participants may have lost the routine in their lives but this scheme helps them to brush up on the skills needed for employment, such as good timekeeping, as well as providing a focus."
Six of the current group are now planning on studying for an NVQ level 2 in catering and customer service and many are actively looking for employment.
Richard Osguthorpe, the Trust’s social inclusion manager, added, "These are difficult times for anyone entering the employment market but this project offers an individual solution for people to navigate their way to recovery.
"As a Trust we are committed to developing the employment support service and enabling people to fulfil their aspirations."