New approach to supporting people into employment for Forward Leeds

Forward Leeds is now running an individual placement and support scheme to help people into work that will aid their recovery.

The individual placement and support (IPS) model adopted at Forward Leeds is about supporting people who have had issues with alcohol or other drugs into meaningful, competitive employment.

IPS Employment Lead Arron Simmonds said: “IPS is client-led. We work with people already being supported by Forward Leeds. We discuss their goals and aspirations, review their strengths, skills and competencies, and support them to find a role that they want. The employment must be complementary to their recovery plan so they work hand-in-hand, helping them to build self-esteem, improve their social network and increase their income.

“It’s completely voluntary. People approach us, either directly or through their worker, and ask for our help. Then if they change their minds, that’s fine too, we’re here to support them with what works best for their recovery.

“The IPS approach has been proven to work, The EQOLISE project compared IPS with other employment approaches and IPS achieves twice the rate of positive job outcomes.”

IPS is a highly personalised very intensive service. The Forward Leeds IPS team will approach employers directly on behalf of people they are working with. They work together with the people they support on job searches and interview preparation.

Once someone is in work the IPS team will continue to support the individual in that role. This can be with regular meetings, catch-ups or calls, for as long as they feel they need support.

Pictured above from left to right are Arron Simmonds, Caroline Hartley-Senior and Alice James Hopton of the new individual placement and support team.