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The Anna Freud Centre supports children and their families through innovative therapeutic practice and research, training and promoting awareness of mental health. The Centre values diversity and aims to have a workforce that reflects this. That's why we set up an annual Researcher Internship Scheme that offers six individuals a three-month funded placement at the Anna Freud Centre. This is a great opportunity for those looking to pursue a career in applied child and adolescent mental health research and evaluation.  

The scheme is aimed at making research careers more accessible and inclusive for individuals who often experience additional barriers in pursuing research careers, or who are underrepresented in the field of mental health research.

Who can apply?

The scheme is open to: 

  • individuals from minoritised ethnic groups, aiming to address under-representation in research communities 
  • individuals with lived experience of mental health difficulties, given the focus of our research 
  • individuals who have an undergraduate degree in psychology, the social sciences or a related field or equivalent experience (e.g., 12 months’ experience in a researcher role) 
  • individuals who have the right to live and work in the UK without restrictions. 
What does the scheme offer?

The scheme offers: 

  • first-hand experience of working on research and evaluation studies 
  • training sessions on applied research and evaluation methods 
  • opportunities to shadow cross-organisational functions such as fundraising, training and communications 
  • access to workshops, seminars and other learning events 
  • weekly supervision meetings 
  • career development mentorship from a senior researcher at the Centre. 
What are the agreed working hours?

Placements range from part time (at least three days or 21 hours per week) to full time (five days or 35 hours per week) and working patterns will be agreed to accommodate other roles and responsibilities. 

Placements benefit from flexibility and involve home working. You will have the option to work 100% remotely or can spend 40% of your time working onsite at our London or Manchester offices, at the addresses listed below: 

  • London: Anna Freud Centre, 48 Rodney Street, London N1 9JH 
  • Manchester: Huckletree, The Express Building, 9 Great Ancoats Street, Manchester M4 5AD 
What is the agreed internship salary?

We offer a full-time salary covering the three-month internship period. The salary will be pro-rata if part-time working hours apply. We offer this salary to make the scheme inclusive of individuals who would not be able to take part in an unpaid internship.

How do I apply?

The internship scheme for 2022 has now closed.

To get the latest news on vacancies and to be notified when we offer the Researcher Internship Scheme again in 2023, please subscribe to the Anna Freud Centre Recruitment Portal or the Anna Freud Centre Learning Network.

Please note: our selection process is anonymous to reduce any biases, so please do not include your name anywhere on your application form. We are unable to accept CVs.

Please email Recruitment@annafreud.org with any enquiries, or if you require assistance or experience difficulties when applying. 

Please note, all our posts require candidates to have the Right to Work in the UK at the time of applying and we do not hold a sponsorship licence. 

What to expect after the closing date

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to an online interview via email. Candidates will be selected on the basis of the requirements stated in the applicant guidance document.  

Successful candidates will also need to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

Please note: The purpose of offering a paid internship scheme is to be inclusive of individuals who would not be able to take part in an unpaid internship for reasons of lack of financial support. By applying to this scheme, you are confirming that you would not otherwise be able to take part in an internship.

Meet the 2022 research interns and read about their experience and feedback

  • Welaa's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "My main takeaway from this internship is probably a sense of direction for the career path I wanted. Before the internship I found it quite difficult to bridge the gap in experience between my degree and a career in research. I think that the skills I gained, the projects I worked on, and the people I connected with has been super valuable."

    Read more

  • Leah's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "I am immensely grateful for this opportunity and hope to return as an employee at the Anna Freud Centre sometime in the future. As a Black woman who has continuously sought out research opportunities, words cannot express my gratitude for this internship. I really do hope the Researcher Internship Scheme continues for years to come, providing others with the same amazing opportunity I was given."

    Read more

  • Anna's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "I didn’t feel pressured to contribute to meetings beyond my knowledge, and it made me feel like a valued team member that I could attend meetings with other permanent members of staff or discuss projects I was involved in at a high level. Overall, the vast majority of things were pitched at the right level and I never felt over or underwhelmed. Importantly, I think there were opportunities to explore interesting things more and so we could really tailor our experiences to things we wanted to learn more about and challenge at the right level."

    Read more

  • Samra's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "Being a recent graduate with very little experience, this internship was a massive confidence boost. I didn’t know what to expect from a full-time 95 role so I was very nervous going into it, but my biggest takeaway would be if you don’t ask, you don’t get so take every opportunity that comes your way even if you feel underqualified. Everyone I worked with at the Centre has been so lovely and it made me realise that people genuinely do want to help you, so if you ever want any advice, people are more than willing to talk to you!"

    Read more

  • Ore's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "There seems to be a close-knit working relationship amongst the departments within the Anna Freud Centre. I feel this is an important aspect, especially when the charity is working diligently to support vulnerable clients. I appreciate how the Centre gives back to the community and makes a conscious effort to involve experts by experience, knowing that professionals do have some knowledge but people who experience mental distress first hand may have invaluable insight into what treatment methods are most effective. This is an initiative I will implement in my work, always ensuring to give back and be mindful that the work I'm doing is grounded not just in theoretical knowledge but knowledge from someone with real-life, first-hand experience."

    Read more

  • Holly's experience as a research intern in 2022

    "The Anna Freud Centre houses some of the kindest and most knowledgeable staff I've ever met. This internship is also for people who may have personal or physical struggles accessing or re-entering a workforce. I want more people who may feel nervous and doubt their worth to apply and know there is flexibility here to support you as you need to be supported."

    Read more

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