Helping school-leaver Jamie to find work experience
When Jamie left school, he had reached his full classroom learning potential. So instead of going to college, he wanted to develop his catering skills in a working environment.
We started working with Jamie before he left school, to help him find work experience places in professional kitchens. Once he left school, he joined the Surrey EmployAbility Pathway, which helps young disabled people to prepare for work. This gives him three days a week of work experience and a day of vocational activities.
Jamie’s work experience is in the University of Surrey’s Hillside restaurants. On his vocational day he goes to an adult cooking class. In the morning, he goes with his buddy to the supermarket and buys ingredients independently. In the afternoon, he follows instructions to cook a meal from scratch.
The classes and the work experience have helped Jamie’s confidence. He chooses not to interact verbally, but once he has settled into an environment, he can relax and respond to the people he is working with. Jamie has become much more confident and the Pathway will give him work and social skills that will help him look for paid work when he is ready.
Helping Jenny be more independent
Jenny was referred to EmployAbility because she needed help to find a paid job. Jenny was making several changes in her life – she wanted to move into her own place, and had recently become unemployed.
Jenny wanted to be a shop assistant or have a job that involved working with customers. She had already started volunteering in customer service roles at the Harlequin and Redhill Hub to get some experience, and really wanted to use her skills to get a paid job.
Once Jenny had found a new flat and settled in, Jenny worked with an Employment Support Officer who met her at home to see what she wanted to do. We helped with job searching, writing a CV and completing applications.
Support that works with you
Only a few weeks after coming to EmployAbility, Jenny was given an interview at Londis for a shop assistant role. We gave her some interview training and she was offered a part-time paid position. We helped her with the practical changes to her benefit payments, looked at her contract of employment with her and helped set up payments from her employer to her bank account.
We stayed in touch for several months after Jenny got her job to make sure everything was working out well. As Jenny became more comfortable and confident in her new job, we reduced our support, but we’re always here if she needs us.
To see if EmployAbility can help you, please get in touch with Christina Earl, EmployAbility Team Manager at Christina.Earl@surreychoices.com