Recite Me

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Thursday, 02 February 2023

Ben’s employment story

Employment can play a huge role in someone's mental health recovery journey. The Individual Placement and Support (IPS) teams at South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust help people with mental illness find and keep employment as part of their journey to recovery.

Ben 2The IPS service offers intensive, individually tailored support to help people find the right job, with ongoing support for the employer and employee.

27-year-old Ben was referred to the Trust’s IPS service in 2020 after receiving specialist care from the Trust’s early intervention in psychosis team.

Ben was introduced to his IPS Employment Specialist, Robert Hill, who supported him with his CV, talked through his skills and interests and provided guidance on how to achieve his goals. 

Ben said: “It was important for me to find a meaningful job, something I feel passionate about and would find fulfilling. At the end of my conversations with Robert, I narrowed it down to working in the film and TV industry, but I had no idea how to get into those industries.”

Robert found Ben a course with Signature Pictures Academy, a social enterprise production company that helps unemployed young people find their way into the film industry. He took part in a two-week course designed to help aspiring filmmakers find work and build contacts.

Ben continued: “One of the first things I was told about being a freelance filmmaker was to make sure you have two different ways of making money. I do labouring on the side which enables me to save up money in between shoots. I feel very lucky to be doing something I enjoy, and which gives me a sense of purpose, while also being financially stable. It puts a smile on my face every day.”

Speaking of his journey, Ben’s employment specialist Robert said: “Ben is a great example of how support from the IPS service can enable someone to achieve their future goals. Helping Ben to find a more meaningful job has had a huge impact on his life and recovery, and it’s fantastic to see his hard work paying off.

“Given Ben’s determination, ambition and commitment that has got him to where his is today, I think he has every chance of getting to where he wants to be in the future."

Ben is continuing to pursue a career as a freelance filmmaker and says he is learning and growing every day. Ben is supported by the IPS team who offer day-to-day guidance and support.

You can watch a short video of Ben in conversation with two of the Trust’s employment specialists here.


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