Norfolk mental health services join forces to support the unemployed

Norfolk mental health services join forces to support the unemployed
Routes Employment Service is being officially launched by Norfolk and Waveney Mind today. It promises to offer people in Norfolk a lifeline for getting back to work if they have been living with mental health issues and engaged with secondary care.
Taking a collaborative approach, this project is working across Community Mental Health Teams around Norfolk.
The Routes Employment Service will strive to achieve three main goals, under the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) model:
  • Enable people to gain meaningful employment and sustain jobs for longer
  • Achieve twice the rate of job outcomes for people with severe mental illness versus traditional employment support
  • Deliver one to one personalised support, which is time unlimited.
Philip Eke Norfolk and Waveney Mind CEO says: “The launch of the Routes Employment Service marks a huge commitment to people living and working in Norfolk. People with severe mental health problems who find paid employment show reduced symptoms, improved quality of life, and financial independence. Just one in ten (9%) of organisations across the UK have a standalone mental health policy for employees – this needs to change*.”
Pete King, Acting Service Manager at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT), said: “We’ve been delighted to support Routes Employment Service by working with Norfolk and Waveney Mind to provide accommodation for their staff and helping them mobilise the service seamlessly with our Adult Community Teams. 
“We know the service will be beneficial to many of our service users who can struggle to find and maintain employment.”
Philip continued: “Employers are now in a critical position with recognising how vital mental health and wellbeing support in the workplace is. Routes Employment Service offers a fundamental change in how we introduce and support people into the workforce, but there’s plenty that can be done from within your place of work. Courses and workshops can inspire, engage and equip your colleagues and managers to be more confident.”
Poor mental health was the most common cause of long-term sickness absence in UK workplaces* and better mental health support in the workplace can save UK businesses up to £8 billion per year.*
Finding Peace in a Frantic World is a new course run by Norfolk and Waveney Mind, aimed at bringing mindfulness skills into the workplace.  Created by Oxford Mindfulness Centre, it’s a distillation of the key elements of traditional, evidenced Mindfulness-based programmes, delivered over brief, 6 - 8 weekly sessions. It follows the bestselling book Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World, (purchased by one in 8 UK households) and offers simple, effective tools to enable busy employees to thrive, connect and sustain their resilience to stress and other workplace challenges.
Norfolk and Waveney Mind is offering a free twilight taster session of this unique, new to Norfolk, course on Monday 21 October. Places can be reserved by contacting

*statistics from CIPD and

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