Employment in mind: the Poppy Factory employability service and veterans with mental health conditions

CAROLAN Stephany
Centre for Mental Health
Publication year:
Place of publication:

This report evaluates evaluate the Poppy Factory’s employability service and examines the challenges experienced by veterans in gaining and retaining civilian employment, the barriers to employment for people with mental health problems, what works in supporting veterans with a mental health condition into employment, and what research evidences this approach. The Poppy Factory supports wounded, injured or sick ex-Service personnel into employment. Since its inception in 1922 it has provided employment opportunities at its headquarters in Richmond, Surrey, and in recent years through its national ‘Getting You Back To Work’ employability service it has been helping wounded, injured or sick veterans in England and Wales who have been out of the Forces for more than two years, to find and sustain open employment within their own communities. The report identifies the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) model as the most effective way of supporting wounded, injured or sick veterans into employment. IPS is a form of evidence-based supported employment for people with serious mental illness, based on the assumption that given the right job and the right support anyone can work and working on the principle of place, train and maintain: working with an individual to find and secure a job in open employment, and then provide the training to support them in that role, rather than the traditional train and place approach where services provide training for an individual and then search for an appropriate job. The report shows that the employment rate for IPS is twice that of usual high quality vocational support for people with serious mental illness; and that veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder are nearly three times more likely get into open employment if they access IPS instead of supported employment. The Poppy Factory’s employability service is similar in many ways to the IPS approach. It does not exclude people on the basis of their mental health diagnosis, it offers expert employment support and seeks open employment opportunities for clients based on their abilities and interests. In addition, the Poppy Factory is taking steps to strategically develop its employability service to achieve a closer fidelity with the IPS model. (Edited publisher abstract)

Subject terms:
mental health, mental health problems, employment, armed forces personnel, intervention, evaluation;
Content type:
England, Wales
Register/Log in to view this resource

Key to icons

  • Free resource Free resource
  • Journal article Journal article
  • Book Book
  • Digital media Digital media
  • Journal Journal

Give us your feedback

Social Care Online continues to be developed in response to user feedback.

Contact us with your comments and for any problems using the website.

Sign up/login for more

Register/login to access resource links, advanced search and email alerts