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  • 20 Mar / 18
    In the media

    “Being supported in the community can help to remove the stigma around mental illness” – Think Ahead participant Thea writes in the Independent

    Think Ahead participant Thea Radburn has written in the Independent’s comment section, Independent Voices, about the importance of social approaches in treating mental illness, and what her job as a mental health social worker involves in practice. Thea, who started the Think Ahead programme in 2016, says that while therapies, medication and inpatient care can be […]

  • 20 Mar / 18
    Features

    “I love the feeling I get when I know I’ve helped someone” – a Think Ahead participant describes a typical week in the life of a mental health social worker

    Sonya Chee, a participant in the second year of the Think Ahead programme, has been included in a promotional feature in the Metro newspaper, describing her typical working week. Sonya is a qualified social worker and is based in an Early Intervention in Psychosis team in East London NHS Foundation Trust. In the feature, she […]

  • 13 Dec / 17
    In the media

    “Exciting, a little bit scary” – participants catch up with Radio 4 about their Think Ahead journey

    A year ago BBC Radio 4’s All in the Mind began a series of interviews with two members of Think Ahead’s 2016 intake – Charlotte Seymour and Alec Tooms. At that point Charlotte and Alec were at the beginning of their journey into mental health social work; a year on they are over half way […]

  • 23 Nov / 17
    Features

    “It’s how mental health social work should be” – why Durham chose to partner with Think Ahead

    Each year Think Ahead partners with NHS Trusts and Local Authorities across England to deliver high-quality social work training for our participants, and to support local services to realise the impact that social interventions can have on people with mental health problems. One of these partners is Durham County Council, which has hosted units of […]

  • 15 Nov / 17
    Features

    A week in the life of a mental health social worker

    We asked experienced mental health social workers what a typical week in the role looks like. Here’s what they told us… Monday Spent morning preparing for meeting with Aleisha – a new referral from a GP – checking notes and establishing objectives. Then met her – some challenges establishing rapport, but ultimately it went well. […]

  • 10 Oct / 17
    Features

    “Lauren helped me go back to work” – Rosalind talks about her social worker’s impact

    Rosalind’s story Rosalind is 58 years-old, has emotionally unstable personality disorder and depression, and is profoundly deaf. Rosalind started working with Think Ahead participant Lauren in December 2016. My adoptive mother died six years ago, she was 101 years old. I got very poorly, I was up and down for years. When I was feeling […]

  • 20 Sep / 17
    Features

    The impact of mental health social work – Matthew and Thea’s story

    Matthew’s story Matthew is a 42 year old man from Stevenage. He has a diagnosis of depression and anxiety disorder. Here he tells us about his work with Thea, a trainee social worker with Think Ahead. Last year I separated from my wife for the second time. I was OK for a little while, but […]

  • 4 Sep / 17
    Features

    “I really enjoy getting up in the morning and going to work” – watch Think Ahead participant Maisie discuss her work

    Last July our first intake of talented graduates and career-changers began training as mental health social workers on the Think Ahead programme. One of these was Maisie Satchwell-Hirst, an Oxford graduate, who joined a community mental health service in Cambridgeshire. In the film below Maisie talks about her experiences in her unit, led by experienced […]

  • 19 Oct / 16
    News

    Quiz: Could you be a mental health social worker?

    Want to understand more about what it takes to be a mental health social worker? We’ve created a short online quiz to help you understand more about the important and challenging decisions that mental health social workers face on a daily basis. The quiz features three scenarios which are based on the experiences of practising social […]

  • 10 Oct / 16
    Features

    World Mental Health Day: Social work and mental health first aid

    It’s World Mental Health Day, and this year’s theme includes Psychological and Mental Health First Aid, bringing to light the importance of supporting people through mental health crises. For thousands of people who experience a mental health crisis each year, their lifeline isn’t a paramedic or a psychiatrist – it’s their social worker who answers […]

  • 10 Oct / 16
    Features

    The role of social work in supporting people through crisis

    Every year, thousands of people experience a mental health crisis. Jacqui Bell, an experienced social worker working with Think Ahead, describes the unique role that social workers play in supporting people through these situations. Crisis can affect anyone Anyone can experience a mental health crisis. They affect people of all ages, genders, and backgrounds, whether […]

  • 20 Sep / 16
    Features

    “It can be a tough profession” – a mental health social worker reflects

    Peb Johal, a mental health social worker from Coventry, shares her reflections on the rewards and challenges of her job.  My passion for working with communities led me to work for a charity for 13 years as an Advice Worker, Manager, and Local Authority Community Economic Regeneration Officer. Unfortunately, I felt I didn’t really have […]