Case Study – Claire’s Story


Claire is 17. She has experienced poor mental health since a young age. She struggled with the transition to adult mental health services, which impacted on her ability to engage with further education. Includem worked with Claire to provide support to engage with relevant services and assisted her to access college.

Claire experienced abuse at a young age and had long history with child mental health services. She was diagnosed with an eating disorder and depression, and had attempted suicide.

At the point where Includem started supporting her, Claire had given up on a training programme, feeling that it was too much for her to manage. This led to her becoming increasingly socially isolated, impacting further on her mental and physical health.

Includem workers identified routes to reduce her social isolation and improve her wellbeing. Working through Includem’s toolkit, ‘A Better Life’, where Claire and her workers concentrated on addressing her health and wellbeing through coaching conversations and active sessions to encourage her to leave the house.

After slowly increasing her physical activity, Claire began to attend a fitness class once a week with her workers which had a notable impact on both her physical and mental health. Her confidence grew and her social circle expanded, reducing her social isolation.

Claire was supported by workers to successfully transition to adult mental health services. They attended appointments with her and assisted her to build a positive relationship with her Community Psychiatric Nurse. This led to her developing a better understanding of her mental health and she became able to manage her medication and get the most from appointments with professionals.

At times of crisis, Claire used Includem’s 24/7 Helpline for support. During a particularly low period, she called the helpline late in the evening verbalising suicidal thoughts. Our flexible model of support meant that she was able to talk to a familiar and trusted worker at a time where she needed it most and receive a face to face visit that evening to ensure she was safe.

Following significant progress with her health and wellbeing, Claire chose to focus on ‘A Better Life’ Education and Employment module, which involved her identifying her aspirations for the future and breaking these down to achievable steps. This work helped her see that she was able to make the step to further education and apply for college. Workers supported her with her application, interview preparation and accessing funding for her course.

They also identified support she could utilise at college when she had moved on from Includem’s service. Claire was supported by our Transitions team for 18 months. She reported that her mental health felt more stable, she was actively engaging with her Community Psychiatric Nurse and managing her medication with support from her mum. She was now able to focus on her education and had completed her first term of college. She was confident to proactively seek ways to learn more about her chosen career path by volunteering and independently arranging work experience.

The name and some key details about this young person have been changed to protect his/her identity.

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