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March 2020

How we’re responding to the coronavirus

This web page was first published on 18 March 2020 and was last updated on 31 March 2020. We will continue to update the page whenever we have new information. 

We are monitoring the coronavirus situation closely, and are adjusting our policies and plans based on the best available evidence and the government’s advice.

Our primary concern is everyone’s health and wellbeing. We understand that there is a lot of uncertainty at the moment, and that this can be unsettling. We will provide as much information about our plans as we can, as soon as we can. Below is our latest advice for people who are, or would like to be, involved in our programme. (If you have more general concerns about your mental health or wellbeing, we recommend looking at the Mental Health Foundation’s advice page.)

Advice for people who want to join the Think Ahead programme

Applications to join the Think Ahead programme in 2020 are now closed. If you are waiting to attend an assessment centre (which means you’ve already passed the situational judgement test and application form stages of the selection process), our recruitment team will be in touch with you to confirm arrangements. We will be running all of our assessment centres remotely until further notice, and you will receive more detailed instructions ahead of your assessment date.

If you’ve already been offered a place on the programme, your Recruitment Associate will be in touch with you soon. Rest assured that we are committed to doing everything we can to ensure the 2020 Cohort can begin in July – and expect that to be the case. We are working closely with Middlesex University (our academic partner) and our host organisations, and over the coming weeks we will be able to share details with people due to join us about any changes we need to make to the programme.

Advice for people who are already taking part in the programme

Please see the advice we are sending you by Slack or email. We are working closely with our academic partners – Middlesex University and the University of York – and with our host organisations to support you through this period and to minimise the disruption to your time on the programme, and we will keep you updated as things develop.

If you’re concerned about anything, please do speak to your Practice Specialist, or your Academic Tutor, or get in touch with us at Head Office by emailing We will do our best to help – but please do bear with us, as we’re managing a fast-changing situation involving lots of different partners.

Advice for host organisations

We will be keeping in touch with Operational Leads at our host organisations to discuss how best to support our participants, so that they can continue to provide the best possible support to the service users they are working with. If you’re a Consultant Social Worker managing some of our participants, please refer to your organisation’s guidance on how to respond to the coronavirus, and please also look out for updates from us on Slack and on email.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please get in touch by emailing

Advice for members of Think Ahead’s Service User and Carer Reference Group

Working collaboratively with people with lived experience of mental health problems remains very important to us – so we will be working hard to ensure that we keep getting valuable input from members of our Service User and Carer Reference Group, including by holding meetings remotely. If you’re a part of this group, our programme team will be in touch with you soon to support you to access the meetings and discuss other ways you can contribute.

Advice for anyone else

Our Head Office staff are working from home, and you can get in touch with us in the normal ways. Please see the contact us page of our website.