"I was made redundant in 2000 and I took it very badly. I did not apply for any work after that because of a fear of interviews that I had developed and the anxiety that went with it. I spent the next eleven years stuck in the benefits system. Over the years I became deeply depressed and socially withdrawn. Eventually in 2011 I spoke to my doctor and she suggested CBT.

"My therapist arranged for me to see the employment adviser, Ian [a Mind in Hackney staff member based within local NHS IAPT services]. When I first met him, I did not have an up to date CV, my computer literacy was awful and I did not have any confidence in filling out applications.  Ian helped me sort out my CV and write my first job application supporting statement, giving me a good template for future applications. He also booked me onto some employment workshops at Mind that focused on overcoming some of the obstacles that stopped me returning to work. Ian also thought it would be a good idea for me to update my computer skills and arranged for me to go over to Mind in Hackney where I met my IT tutor, Rob.

"Rob enrolled me onto a short ten-week basic computer literacy course. The course enabled me to manage files and to apply for work online. After that he suggested that I take a certificated course, giving me a qualification that would increase my employability. Whilst on the course I continued my therapy, and Ian arranged for me to start having some practice interviews, which were daunting but very useful. I got better at applying for jobs and it was not long before I received my first invite for an interview. I did not get the job but did start getting more interviews and on the third occasion I was offered the position.

"I am now back in full time work, computer literate and getting my life back on track. None of this would have been possible without the support that I received from everybody at the hospital and at Mind in the City, Hackney and Waltham Forest."

*Name and photo identity have been changed.