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A meeting of minds on mental health: Seeing past the stigma to realise the talent


Wednesday 12th September; 9.15am – 1.00pm

Disability Café

Hosted by Arcadis; Central London

The importance of mental health remains a key issue for employers, and particularly graduate recruiters. Research carried out by the NUS found that eight out of ten students said they had experienced poor mental health in their final year at university; a third of the respondents also said they had had suicidal thoughts.

These students are bright, hard working and ambitious. They have developed skills such as resilience, self awareness and empathy to manage their situation; skills that employers look for in abundance in their employees. To attract them to the workplace and enable them to succeed employers need to not only understand the pressures and anxieties that are experienced in the transition from education to employment, but also provide the support required to enable individuals to excel in the tough environments that they will invariably find themselves in.

During this Café, experts will shed light on this complex subject and help us to understand what we are actually talking about when we talk about ‘mental health’. We will also look at the potential causes of poor mental health amongst young people, as well as considering the challenges individuals face both in terms of being open about their mental health with potential employers and requesting the support they require.

Individuals who have experienced mental health issues will reveal their concerns of entering employment; they will provide real and honest insights into a subject that continues to be a huge taboo – both in and out of the workplace. Employers will also share best practice in terms of reducing the stigma that exists around mental health, how they have encouraged openness and how they provide ongoing support for their employees.

By attending this Café you will learn more about the subject of mental ill health and in doing so remove the fear and silence that exists around this subject. It will build your confidence to have relevant conversations with your applicants and employees enabling them to have the support they require to excel in their role.



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Tricia Driver
Tricia is the Founder and CEO of A New Normal Ltd, creating business impact through inclusion. A New Normal supports organisations in attracting, developing and retaining the best people from broad and diverse talent pools, enabling the creation and sustenance of environments which give all employees the freedom to be their full selves at work every day. 

Trish has over 15 years experience across the end to end talent life-cycle, from employer branding and recruitment process design, through to people development and alumni programmes. She’s worked across the inclusion landscape, is an expert in Unconscious Bias and Inclusion, a skilled and highly regarded coach and a compelling speaker. Trish is passionate about enabling organisations and individuals to start conversations about mental health, believing that it’s intrinsically linked to an inclusive culture. She describes herself as passionate about all things equality, a feminist, LGBT+ ally, parent, entrepreneur and plate-spinner in chief.

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Matt Ayton
Matt is a Senior Manager in EY’s Global Compliance and Reporting business. 

Always seeing mental health as something that other people deal with, and living with an attitude of ‘stress is normal’, in 2016, amidst a number of life changing events, Matt had a sudden and intense insight into what mental ill-health can really be about.After a few months off work and several therapy sessions he returned to work with a new attitude and a determination to contribute in some way to the growing awareness of mental health in the workplace.

Matt is currently working towards accreditation in Solution Focussed Brief Therapy and is the External Communications Leader for EY UK’s Mental Health Network, an employee lead volunteer network dedicated to supporting colleagues, raising awareness, organising events and providing a forum for discussions both within the organisation and outside.

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Rebecca Crow
Rebecca is a Senior Executive Assistant at Citi.  Rebecca as well as having been Worldwide Cabin Crew for British Airways has over twelve years experience in the Investment Banking world, having worked for Goldman Sachs, UBS, JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank and now Citi.  In 2015 shortly after the birth of her first child Rebecca was diagnosed with Post-Natal Depression (PND) and Anxiety. 

Following a fight for a diagnosis, including stays in both a mental health assessment unit and then one of the UK’s 24 mother and baby units, Rebecca has gone on to return back to work full time while setting up a website called to help others coping with the diagnosis of PND.  The primary function is to provide a one stop resource for women and men who are affected by Post Natal Depression (PND) to guide them get the right help, support and information they need at the time they need it the most, now. In time Your Song hopes to register as a charity and in turn will be able to provide financial support to the Mother and Baby units around the UK dedicated to treating women suffering from Post Natal Depression (PND) and other Mental Health illnesses.

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Adam Dempsey
Adam is a future trainee solicitor with Baker McKenzie. Before starting his career in Law, Adam studied Politics at Durham. During his time at university, Adam struggled with bouts of depression, upon which his condition was diagnosed for the first time. On moving to London, he volunteered for two years with a mental health helpline, serving for one year in their executive committee. While in a brief period of employment between academic studies, Adam was involved in a mental health campaign addressing associated stigmas in workplace environments. Adam is keen to improve access to mental health services and reduce the stigma around those suffering from mental health-related issues and is involved with this project for that end.


Caroline Lindner
Caroline is a Senior Manager in Global Communications and Engagement at Norton Rose Fulbright. Caroline has extensive experience of graduate recruitment, HR, diversity and inclusion, communications and engagement within the legal sector. She has worked for Linklaters, Hogan Lovells, Allen & Overy and Norton Rose Fulbright.

Caroline has a proven track record of developing award winning national recruitment campaigns and delivering and coordinating global communications for business transformation projects. She is also passionate about diversity and inclusion and is Co-Chair of Norton Rose Fulbright’s mental health network, Breathe.

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Mubariz Mujtaba
Mubariz has just completed his 2nd year at The University of Nottingham and is currently on an internship within Deutsche Bank within its Markets division.

Diagnosed with Depression, Anxiety and PTSD during sixth form, he has since been working to understand mental health himself as well as promote understanding and support for those with mental health issues. Notably, he has been very involved in pushing for “Lecture Capture” at his university at both the individual lecture and university level, even getting this implemented at the China Campus of Nottingham for the first time.


Will More
Will is currently a student at the University of Exeter, having completed a year's placement at Enterprise Holdings' European Headquarters. During his time there he worked on their Social Mobility Index and Stonewall submissions and, on behalf of the Disability Committee, contributed to the development of a Disability Passport to aid employees and managers alike. 

Following an unexpected deterioration which caused him to be absent from work, Will was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. On returning to work he published a blog which was read by thousands, highlighting the difficulties of mental illness and also dispelling myths about this often mis-understood disease. Following the blog, he has been approached by several companies to advise them on their mental health processes and is excited to continue this alongside his studies

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Aaron Sherwood
Aaron is a recent ‘Top 5%’ Management Graduate of the University of York with a First-Class Honours with Distinction, now working as a Business Development Consultant at Vokins Chartered Surveyors before he embarks upon his Graduate Scheme with Accenture.

In 2016 Aaron was diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following a violent spontaneous lung collapse in 2015. Nonetheless, during Aaron’s time at the University of York he secured the prestigious York Award Gold, was elected the President of the Business, Accounting and Management Society, Course Representative for three consecutive years as well as completed a year’s industrial placement at Enterprise Holdings where he worked directly on the companies Social Mobility Index and Co-Founded the SMART (Stress, Management & Relaxation Techniques) Society.

MyPlus Recruiters’ Club Platinum members are entitled to 2 complimentary places and MyPlus Recruiters’ Club Gold members are entitled to 1 complimentary place at Disability Cafés.

Additional places may be purchased by members at a reduced price of £175 +VAT
Silver members may also purchase places at a reduced price of £175 + VAT
Non-members may purchase places at a price of £350 + VAT.
Contact to purchase places.