Dan’s story: overcoming depression and anxiety
In 2016, Dan lost his mother after a short illness and experienced a breakdown in his mental health, describing feeling alone and isolated in his grief. Daniel began to experience depression and anxiety causing him to lose his job, his home and for his long – term relationship to break down.
After five months of sofa surfing and with his self esteem being extremely low and anxiety levels high, Dan was eventually referred to Platfform’s Tenancy Support Team via the Homeless Tenancy Support Unit. The priority was to house Dan in a supported accommodation flat managed by Platfform and assign him a Support Worker to help with his mental health concerns. It soon became clear that even everyday activities such as phone calls and appointments caused his anxiety to spike, leading to even more emotional distress and frustration.
However, safe in his accommodation and with the guidance of his Support Worker, Dan’s drive for change and willingness to push himself out of his comfort zone grew daily. Over the next two years his determination helped him to overcome the barriers facing him to live the life that he wanted. Dan engaged in all forms of support on offer by Platfform and he was soon able to develop his confidence and self-esteem to gradually make changes.
One of Daniel’s main coping strategies is sport so Platfform staff supported Daniel to join his local gym, further helping to build up his confidence.
Dan’s attention to detail with cleaning his own flat was noticed by Platfform staff and prompted a discussion with regards to employment opportunities with APP UK. The APP UK Manager went to meet Dan and discuss potential opportunities, taking into account the training and development that Dan would need , together with the ongoing mentoring and support that would be required. An opportunity arose for Dan to be offered part time employment, cleaning the communal areas of the Supported Accommodation where he was living.
The opportunity provided the perfect re-introduction into the workplace as it was within Dan’s known environment, safe and secure. Dan started work with APP UK in July 2017. He began his employment slowly, with just four hours of work per week. APP’s management team provided a close point of contact for Dan and worked with him on a one to one basis, training him in cleaning methodologies, procedures for dealing with cleaning products and materials, Health & Safety awareness and customer interaction. Little by little Dan’s confidence and self-esteem grew and he felt he had a real purpose in life. APP UK’s Business Manager Jenny White, has continued to provide that personal mentoring and support for Dan in the workplace, ensuring that he has a familiar and friendly face to liaise with.
Dan is now employed across a number of APP UK customer sites, increasing his weekly hours to 14. His confidence is unrecognisable and he now liaises quite happily with the other managerial and supervisory staff at APP and APP Customers alike. Feedback from the customers regarding Dan’s work is always highly positive and he is a dedicated and valued member of the team.
Dan’s drive to make changes whilst being supported by Platfform and APP has helped to transform his life. Dan’s journey over the past few years can inspire anyone experiencing difficulties in their mental health to seek help and realise that positive change is possible with the right support and approach.
Cardiff Cleaning Services Ltd, T/A APP UK, Suites 7 & 8, First Floor, Moy Road Business Centre, Moy Road, Taffs Well , Cardiff CF15 7QR
Registered in England & Wales No. 06136290 VAT No. 483975881
Tel: 02920 885435
A wholly owned subsidiary of registered charity, Platfform