Publish date: 16 March 2021
On World Social Work Day (16 March), two service users talk about their journeys to recovery.
Frank was referred to West London Forensic Services as there were concerns about the risk he presented to the community. He feared that he would be stuck as an inpatient for a long time. His social worker put in place a risk management plan to help him change his life around.
This plan offered Frank a clear road to recovery. He took part in different work supervised placements, and his social worker organised extended periods of supervised leave, to integrate him gradually back into the community.
Frank noticed the difference straight away. He felt hopeful for the future, knowing he had a loving and supportive family network and a newfound interest in various community activities. At the same time, he felt he could be honest about his hopes and fears.
Frank knew recovery would take time. But saw a future where he could return to study and work, focus on his wellbeing and visit family safely. He has now successfully moved back to his community with the right support in place.
Lydia had been suffering from delusions, hallucinations and depression, which made her angry and detached from those she loved. When she was referred to the Trust’s Early Intervention in Psychosis service, she met her social worker. Together, they began by focusing on her main symptoms, which were altering her eating and sleeping habits, which, in turn, caused a lack of concentration and energy.
Lydia allowed herself to embrace her talents, focusing on her love for reading and rock painting. She was determined to achieve her key goals: to feel happy and confident, be able to trust people and enjoy spending time with them and engage in activities that contribute to wider society and her own development.
Despite the lack of face-to-face contact with her social worker during the Covid-19 restrictions, the virtual interactions were positive and helped her to realise her ambitions and potential. She’s now at university and attending the Trust’s Recovery College. She’s planning on an art display. She’s now also able to manage her anger and is much closer to her family.