Active Inclusion programme bringing people into employment
Businesses are being encouraged to get involved with a programme designed to help people with a mental health condition get into, or back into, employment.
The new European Social Fund and Warwickshire County Council-funded programme 'Active Inclusion,' delivered in partnership with mental health charity Rethink Mental Illness, is designed to support people with mental health issues and enable them to gain and sustain work.
It also strives to help young offenders improve their educational outcomes, thereby reducing their offending behaviour.
The programme was launched in March and will continue until December 2019 with the objective of supporting more than 350 Warwickshire residents.
Those residents will each receive an invaluable pathway into employment while the businesses which take them on get a chance to tap into talent until now, for various reasons, untapped.
Dr John Linnane, Director of Public Health, Warwickshire County Council, wants all local business to consider getting involved.
“For most of us, being in paid work is essential for our wellbeing and financial security," said Dr Linnane. "Yet we know that people with mental health conditions face particular challenges with securing and retaining employment.
"As Director of Public Health for Warwickshire, I urge all of our local businesses to work with Rethink to help us to raise the employment rate for this particularly disadvantaged group.
"We know, through national and international research, that supported employment for people with mental health conditions works. It provides financial stability and helps with longer-term recovery and wellbeing for the individual.
"Rethink locally have already supported 95 individuals over the last three years into supported employment, but we need to do more and want to work with you and your business to make this happen."
Warwickshire County Council is managing the programme while Rethink Mental Illness delivers the mental health element as part of the Warwickshire Mental Health Employment Support Service (recently expanded through the European Social Fund). Rethink Mental Illness is a highly-respected organisation which, for 40 years, has brought people together to support each other through services, groups and campaigns.
The programme will be highly personalised and tailored specifically to each individual on it. Participants can be on the programme for as long as necessary in order to achieve their results.
Rethink Mental Illness service manager Karen Groves said: "We have provided specialist mental health employment support in Warwickshire for 15 years. Over that time we have seen the positive difference that targeted and specialist employment support has had on what is one of the biggest ‘want-to-work groups’ out there. There are great outcomes for amazing individuals who want to be part of something and contribute just like everyone else.
"However the stigma attached to mental illness often means discrimination or stereotyping which, in turn, excludes this group of highly motivated, intelligent and loyal people from the general workforce. And that is such a loss to business.
"The additional ESF funding means that we are now able to offer even more support to more people across Warwickshire which can only be a good thing.
If your business would like to get involved please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about Rethink Mental Illness please visit www.rethink.org