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Want to work in Mental Health..Where to start?(13 Posts)
30 years old single mum part time worker. I would love to work and help people in the mental health section particularly disorders like depression, OCD anxiety etc whether that mean one on one or phone advisor etc but I have no idea where to start or what job role that may entail?! I don't have any degrees only GCSEs I have a hell of a lot of experience in this field.
I know I would to study to get a qualification etc but I'm wondering how would I cope with an income too
Is anyone working/studying in the MH section who
Could offer advice ?
What is your experience?
What GCSEs did you get?
Have you done any kind of academic work or training since?
Can you afford to take time off work to study or would it need to be a route that attracted bursaries etc?
Can you only work/study part time?
There's a few different routes into working in MH. Within the NHS MH is a stepped-care model - do you know what intensity of treatment you'd like to work with? Telephone counselling suggests to me you're thinking low-intensity, but of course there are a range of roles at high-intensity and inpatient care also.
Look up your local NHS mental health service- this will link to the trust website, have a see in the workforce/HR pages as many hold recruitment fairs so you can go and speak to a range of people. Don’t be put off if they are held in a college either, they will happily talk to adult learners
Could you try the care route to get some hands on experience? Support worked in community based settings, supported living, residential units, crisis units ect. Might give you abit of direction
Access course in Health and Social Care or level 3 nvq if you need further qualifications. Support worker in a daycentre or voluntary work with a mh charity?
You can become a volunteer mental health support worker for a start. I did it with the Glasgow association for mental health. We were called "befrienders". Look into mental health charities in your area and call up to see if they are looking for volunteers.
If you want to work in more of a clinical setting then one route is to get a degree in psychology. From that, there are many routes. One being clinical psychology etc. But you'd need to get back into the academic world for that, so starting with some college qualifications in order to meet the criteria to apply for a degree.
There are of course many many other routes; you'd just have to decide what tour end goal is and work towards that.
Studying and working part time will be hard, but perfectly doable. Do you have anyone who would be happy to look after your kids for free as that would help a lot?
Wow I'm overwhelmed with responses , Thankyou! I have been in my job for 12 years so I wouldn't like to try and study along side it if I could. It's a big career move and risk I would be taking. Childcare hopefully wouldn't be an issue.
I will look into all your advice tomorrow.
A health care support worker (bank or fill time) in the nhs in a mental health field- ward assertive outreach team or crisis team would be a good idea to see if you enjoy it. If you do then there’s FE you can do to progress, if your finding it hard to be shortlisted for interviews then volunteer to improve your chances. Be sure to research what local initiatives are going on in your area, these will help not only for interviews but for volunteering to. The NHS sometimes do schemes where they will pay you to train as a mental health nurse, another longer term option would be to become a social worker who specialises in mental health. Again they will have support worker roles which will give you a flavour of what the role entails.
I've done a little research and a registered mental health nurse looks good it states however i would need GCSEs in maths and science grade A-C which i don't have! I was always terrible at maths 😔 never was a natural and 2-3 A levels which I don't have either. Such a shame 😩😩
Level 2 Maths may count as equivalent and check entry requirements for an Access to Nursing course which can bypass A levels.
It’s something to work towards! Lots of access to health courses will help but maybe starting off in the field is a way to start. Lots of health care support workers can work their way up the pay grades in the nhs so it’s close to a qualified nurse, you just need to have patience and a willingness to learn 🙂
I would get a job as a band 3 support worker in a psychiatric inpatient unit, then work towards the next step from there. Some trusts have free spaces to train how to be a mental health nurse.