David is in his forties and lives in the Camborne area. He has been supported by Pluss, through the Health Works for Cornwall programme, which is delivered on behalf of Cornwall Council.
The programme helps people living in the county who have any health-related barrier that is affecting their employment status. Change coaches work with individuals to enable them to experience a range of activities, including bespoke one-to-one coaching, that seeks to increase their confidence and ultimately, their employability.
Megan is a change coach with Pluss who worked with David over several months to help him work through his barriers so he could move forward with his life.
David said: “I suffer with generalised anxiety with overtones of OCD and depression and I wanted to make some positive changes in my life and try to get a bit of momentum in what I was doing.”
Megan was introduced to David in March 2022, where he was initially referred to Pluss to provide support to help him with his anxiety.
The Pluss approach
Megan continued: “My main aim for participants like David is to find coping strategies and set goals to create little steps in moving forward. My approach is very informal, and I work really hard in building a relationship with an individual that in turn means we’re able to work together, which means they feel confident in taking those steps forward.
When David first met Megan, they sat down and discussed what support David was looking for and what barriers were holding him back. Part of this process is gaining a participants trust to open up and discuss what can sometimes be a sensitive topic.
Megan continued: “The things we put in place, through Health Works for Cornwall, were six funded counselling sessions. These helped David to put strategies in place for his anxiety. We explored local connections and community groups for him to experience and be part of once his time with Health Works for Cornwall came to an end. We looked at courses for him too, and we’ve attended some gym sessions. We know that physical health is important for your mental health. David has also taken part in some beach days to meet other people within the program, and some craft sessions. These activities help tackle stress, in a positive and social environment.”
After several months of regular sessions with Megan, David has completed his time on the Health Works for Cornwall programme. We asked David what his experience was like and had it been a positive and worthwhile experience?
David concluded: “When I first started on the programme my anxiety was really through the roof. I was having trouble going out and about. It was affecting me badly, especially going to new places.
“It was incredibly useful being able to talk to someone who was actively engaged with what I was saying. But I think above all else, for me it was useful being able to speak to someone who was so honest and truthful in our interactions. I found it incredibly helpful.
“Megan’s support has made a tremendous difference to my well-being and my emotional health and I think it’s given me a good framework for moving forward with my life.”
Pluss’ Health Works for Cornwall offers help and guidance in a variety of different ways:
Support is tailored to each individual and could include:
- Help to build self-esteem, confidence and independence
- Understanding each individuals work, life and health aspirations
- Assisting with job search, CVs and interview techniques
- Arranging work trials, tasters and introductions to local employers
- In-work support for up to six months.
Health Works for Cornwall is co-financed by the European Social Fund.
If you’d like to find out more, click on the link below or send an email to HWC@pluss.org.uk