Tom discovered the Work and Health Programme in 2018.
He was very uncertain at first and couldn't see the way forward. Now he is back in work and raring to go.
"I was unsure of the help available and if it would be successful. I have generalised anxiety disorder. I didn't think there was a way forward for me. I was concerned about being pushed into work that I didn't want to do. Emotionally, I had allowed my standards to drop and my appearance was out of sorts due to my depressed state.
"After my second meeting with my Change Coach, we discussed my dream job and ways to achieve it. My Change Coach told me that my expectations were not unrealistic and that was the trigger that prompted me to change.
"Within a two week period, I had decided to change my appearance, change my thought process and change my motivation. My Change Coach had shown me that I wasn't alone. We then developed a plan to move forward with working towards my dream job as an NVQ assessor.
"The first step was to update my skills through gaining employment with a support work agency. We tried many approaches and in pretty much the last one, I gained an interview.
"We were both elated! My life was finally back on the tracks. We prepared for the interview and then prepared again.
"On the day of the interview, literally just outside the venue, my hearing-aid broke. I phoned my Change Coach and said 'I can't go in because I can't hear properly'.
He said 'Well you can hear me now". I replied 'That's my good ear'. He gave me a little talk about positive thought and said "Explain your problem and advise that you will be turning your good ear towards them'. He gave me the confidence to have a go and I did.
"I got the job!
"I am now just waiting on my DBS clearance and I'm on my way. Without being referred onto the programme I would still be in my depressed state with no future. My Change Coach gave me the confidence to have a go.
The Work and Health Programme is co-financed by the European Social Fund.