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Psychosis sufferer finds 'new lease of life' through employment scheme

Psychosis sufferer finds 'new lease of life' through employment scheme

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 7:20am 10th October 2019.

A psychosis sufferer from Cornwall says he turned to drink and drugs, before finding a new lease of life.

27-year-old Ben Bray experienced PTSD for around three years and barely left the house.

But luckily he found help from an employment programme, through a mental health organisation in Cornwall called Pentreath. 

He is now a peer mentor to others with mental health problems.

The NHS has announced ÂŁ500,000 of national funding for mental health employment schemes across the country.

"If it hadn’t been for Pentreath and the support that they gave me into employment I would still be at home unable to leave the house and fearful of social situations.

"Thanks to them I have completed a BTEC course in administration as well as other vocational qualifications including Understanding Mental Health level 2 and I have gone from volunteering at Pentreath to full-time employment with the organisation.

"My life has been transformed, it’s unbelievable and I can’t thank them enough. The change in me is unbelievable, yes I have good days and bad days but my lifestyle is completely different now."

Ben Bray

NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group has been successful in its bid to NHS England for transformation money to expand the Individual Placement and Support service (IPS) as part of the NHS Five Year Forward View for mental health.

The funding will enable the expansion of the successful IPS employment scheme delivered by the non-profit organisation Pentreath embedded within Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT).

Employment specialists from Pentreath, alongside peer mentors will work in collaboration with the early intervention in psychosis teams, community mental health teams and the community mental health forensic service to help people get a job as quickly as possible.  

They will also provide individually tailored support for as long as the person needs it to ensure they can make a success of their job.

"Too many people continue to believe that work is an unrealistic goal for people with serious mental health problems but that is simply untrue.

"Evidence gathered about people who have been through the IPS pilot shows that people experiencing psychosis and other metal illnesses can work and that this helps to sustain their recovery.

"When people are in employment they have a reason to get on with life, achieve their goals and ultimately the person’s mental health improves."

Paul Reeve, business development manager at Pentreath

Referrals for the new IPS service will come through the CFT clinical team where the employment specialist is co-located.

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