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Fifty-two year old, Adrian Robertson from Walthamstow had a breakdown a few years ago. After taking some time off work, the doctor advised him he had severe depression and it would take time to get back to his job - after a while his employer let him go.

Adrian who lives with his older brother, also has proteinuria which is a condition of the kidneys, as well as arthritis and diabetes type two.

Adrian said: “I thought I’d only be off work for a few weeks with the depression, a month at most! When I lost my job it knocked me down even further and made me not want to talk to anyone. It had a spiralling effect on my mood because I didn’t know how long I was going to be ill.”

After two years of unemployment he sought support from Maximus HealthWorks, the leading provider of health and employment support in London, to help him back into work.

He was supported on the Local London Work and Health Programme, which is a locally designed and commissioned specialist employment support programme, funded by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), with part-funding from the European Social Fund.

Adrian now works for Sainsbury’s where he manages the frozen food counters.

He said: “When you’re working you’ve got structure and you don’t feel so depressed because you feel that you’re worth something. It’s really nice having money to spend at the end of the week, I’ve not had this kind of money for years so it’s a bit like winning the lottery for me and I’m proud to be able to tell people that I’m working.”

Ellington McDonald, Maximus HealthWorks Job Broker, said: “I spoke to Adrian to find out what he was looking for in a new role, the kind of hours he could work and worked with his Keyworker to build on his CV. He didn’t want to work far from home so I concentrated on local employers which is when we identified the job with Sainsbury’s which he got after some intense job coaching sessions. Adrian is an upbeat guy but he was initially sceptical about finding work in his area. He was really pleased to get this role and he’s doing really well.”

The Local London Work and Health Programme is being delivered in partnership with local organisations to provide holistic, personalised employment and health support for 14,700 people.

Adrian added: “When I looked out of the window before everything looked grey but now I see colour because I’m a thousand times happier. I would encourage others to get help too, even if you feel hesitant as I did just give it a go. People at Maximus are willing to help you - they helped me get a job I love doing!” 

Interested in being referred to the Local London Work and Health Programme? Speak to your JobCentre Plus Work Coach, who will check if you are eligible before referring you for our support.