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Apply your mind to mental health

The Think Ahead programme is a new route into social work, for graduates and career-changers remarkable enough to make a real difference to people with mental health problems.

  • Paid fast-track scheme
  • Master’s degree & leadership training

Find out more about the programme
  • I am determined that we do all we can to improve the lives of those facing mental health problems in this country.

    That starts by bringing the very best people into the sector to raise the bar in how we provide care and support, which is exactly what Think Ahead is all about.
    Quote icon Rt Hon David Cameron MP
    Prime Minister
  • Mental ill-health is a pressing national issue, at the root of many social, economic, and medical problems. We urgently need talented individuals to lead the advancement of mental health care.

    Think Ahead provides a rigorous, fast-track route into an expert profession, giving top graduates and career-changers the opportunity to transform the lives of people with mental illness.
    Quote icon Lord Andrew Adonis
    Former Labour Minister
  • I’m delighted that Think Ahead will open more people’s eyes to the rewarding nature of working in mental health.

    People with mental health problems have a right to expect the highest quality of professional support. That’s a complex challenge, and Think Ahead will create experts who can bring together the NHS, local councils, and voluntary organisations to provide excellent services.
    Quote icon Paul Farmer
    Chief Executive, Mind & Think Ahead board member
  • Think Ahead's purpose is to improve people's experiences of using mental health services, and to develop the impact of the mental health social work profession.

    Think Ahead will boost the visibility and voice of mental health social work, promoting our expertise in social interventions, our leadership of practice, and our innovation.
    Quote icon Dr Ruth Allen
    Director of Social Work, South West London and St George’s NHS Mental Health Trust & Think Ahead board member
  • Think Ahead is a new and exciting route for talented people to become excellent mental health social workers.

    Mental health social workers educated and trained through the Think Ahead programme should enhance the quality of mental health services and make a positive impact in service users’ lives.
    Quote icon Professor David Croisdale-Appleby OBE
    Author of the government’s review of social work education & Think Ahead board member
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