We sat down with Jonathan, a new trainee PWP in the Exeter City team, to discuss why he decided to join TALKWORKS and what made him work in mental health:
“I have a long held interest in mental wellbeing since graduating from the University of East Anglia with a degree in English and Philosophy in 1998, and have pursued this over the last 20 years. I worked with MIND at a Kent day centre where I facilitated poetry, gardening and walking groups with service users, and more recently through different housing and support roles in Devon, over the past 14 years with Westward Housing Group.
At Westward, roles that particularly resonated for me, were 3 years of recovery focussed work as a community based mental health support worker in Exeter and Mid Devon. In this role I supported clients to manage their own housing and wellbeing. I then worked for 8 years as the South Hams support services manager, where my duties included overseeing ‘Redworth Supported living Projects’ in Totnes. During this time, myself and my team worked closely alongside secondary mental health services and social services in the promotion of greater stability and choice for our residents.
All of these roles have offered unique and privileged access to the lives of others and rich opportunities for my own growth and greater understanding of our shared human experience.
In 2017 - I chose to begin training as a Person-Centred counsellor with Exeter College, alongside my professional work, and qualified in 2021 as an accredited registrant counsellor with the National Counselling Society.
It remains my aim to use these experiences and learning to deliver accessible therapeutic options in an environment in which I can also continue to learn and grow, and am excited now to be joining TALKWORKS for the next chapter.
Outside of this I find my grounding in life with my family on the outskirts of Exeter near the beautiful Ludwell Valley, and in pursuits such as camping, walking, fishing - and local adventure that get me out regularly into the wilderness on our doorstep.”
TALKWORKS is a free-to-access NHS service for adults across Devon who are struggling with a common mental health problem, including feeling low, down, anxious or stressed. Our team is made up of therapists who are here to listen to you and help get you feeling more like yourself again. If you would like to access our services, you can self-refer by filling out our online form or calling 0300 555 3344 (Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm).
Posted by Victoria Walmesley on 25 August, 2023