As your symptoms improve you may start to think about going to university or getting a job. This can be a big challenge, but with the right advice and preparation it can be exciting, rewarding and confidence-boosting.
The carers service is a good place to start. Here are the links for Next Step (England), Northern Ireland, Skills Development Scotland / Learning Choices Scotland and Careers Wales.
It's important to make sure that you are physically ready to take on a course or work. Discuss the idea with friends, family and your doctor. You need to be really honest with yourself about what you can manage.
Thinking about going to uni?
Check out our Student Hub.
What about an apprenticeship?
If you are 16, an apprenticeship gives you the option of doing work-based training, getting some useful national vocational qualifications and earning a wage at the same time.
Depending on where you live, check out Apprenticeships (England), Northern Irelands’s Department for Employment and Learning, Apprenticeships in Scotland or Careers Wales.
Increasingly, jobs are advertised online. You can:
- search general sites like Gov.uk Jobsearch or Jobsite
- type ‘find job' (and the name of the town or industry you want to work in) into a search engine like google
- look for vacancies on the websites of the companies you are interested in working for.
You could also check out your local paper (they may advertise local jobs on a particular day of the week) or visit your local Jobcentre Plus (or see their websites).
Directgov has tips on looking for work including safe job hunting.
Volunteering can help you build up gradually into paid work. It allows you to test out whether you can cope with work and the work environment, without taking on a huge commitment or signing an employment contract. It can also demonstrate that you are keen, motivated and employable.
Most towns have a volunteer centre or try Vinspired (England), Volunteer Now (Northern Ireland), Volunteer Scotland or Volunteering Wales.