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January 2021

How we’re responding to the coronavirus

This web page was last updated on 18 January 2021. We will continue to update the page whenever we have new information. 

We are monitoring the coronavirus situation, and the third national lockdown, closely, and are ensuring that our policies and plans are in line with the best available evidence and the government’s advice.

Our primary concern is everyone’s health and wellbeing. We know there has been a lot of uncertainty, 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 2021 are open for a limited number of locations. If you’re interested in applying, please read our news story to find out which locations you can still apply to, and to understand more about the programme and how to apply.

Our application process – including our assessment centres – currently takes place online, so your ability to apply to the programme will not be affected by the coronavirus restrictions.

Advice for people who are already taking part in the programme

For participants already on the Think Ahead programme, please rest assured that we are working closely with our academic partner, Middlesex University, and with our host organisations to support you through this period.

If you’re a member of our 2020 Cohort, please see the updated Placement Learning Guidance that has been circulated via email and Slack to advise of the changes that have been made to placement learning during Placement Stage Two and during the Contrasting Learning Experience.

If you’re a member of our 2019 Cohort, please continue to follow the health and safety protocols of your host organisation. If you have any questions or concerns, please speak to your Practice Specialist.

We encourage all of our participants to continue to look out for messages from us on Slack, and you can view our pinned post on what sources of support are available to you by clicking on the “Programme Updates” channel.

Social workers have been identified as a high priority group for Covid-19 vaccination, so you should be able to get a vaccine soon should you wish to do so.

Advice for host organisations

If you are an Operational Lead or Consultant Social Worker at one of our host organisations, please see the updated Placement Learning Guidance that has been circulated via email to advise of the changes that have been made to placement learning during Placement Stage Two and the Contrasting Learning Experience.

Please continue to refer to your organisation’s guidance on how to respond to the coronavirus, and look out for any future updates from us via email. If you have any further questions or concerns, please get in touch with your Practice Specialist.

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. We are very grateful for input from members of our Service User and Carer Reference group and will continue to work with you remotely.

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.