HWC supports Heather to take positive steps towards employment

CSW Health works for Cornwall supported Heather to take positive steps towards employment.  She faced eviction, had many health barriers and anxiety.  With the help of her Change Coach Heather has gained qualifications, taken positive steps to improve her physical and mental health and been guided in getting prepared to look for work.  She is preparing a portfolio, hoping to secure a role as a Tattoo Artist.

When Heather signed up to the HWC project, she was 23 years old and living in a room in a shared house but was going to be made homeless which was unexpected. Heather also had several undiagnosed health conditions for which she took high pain relief and was in regular contact with her GP. Through Heather’s challenges with her health and housing, the Change Coach and Heather discussed Heathers work goals, with Heather linked in with the Princes Trust photography course and a plan to engage with their Enterprise course, Heather expressed an interest in becoming a tattoo artist, with the Change Coach advising on this and explaining that a first step would be to put together a portfolio of work that could be used to approach an employer to request an apprenticeship opportunity. Alongside this the Change Coach also advised on the employer benefits of recruiting an apprentice, which Heather could use when approaching employers, and made sure that Heather’s CV was in good shape.

Heather was guided to explore online courses that may support Heather’s progression into this career path. With Heather’s goal of becoming a tattoo artist in mind, we discussed the benefits of completing a first aid course, which would be a requirement and a useful qualification to gain when approaching employers. Heather was therefore linked in with, funded and attended a one day first aid at work course and leaves the project with this qualification. Heather’s challenges with her health continued and Heather was awarded limited capability for work, which meant that she didn’t have a requirement to look for work but needed to make the steps to prepare for work.

Heather and her Change Coach have reviewed her time on the project and looking forward where the next 12 months will lead. Heather has been encouraged to consider Kickstart vacancies but feels that as an initial first step she would like to start with something more low level and feels there may be the opportunity for a few hours at the local cinema. During her time on the HWC project, Heather has been advised on a range of services that can support her going forward.

Heather said ‘I feel the HealthWorks project helped me a lot with my mental health and helped with my motivation and confidence, I was given advice about things that I never knew existed. I always felt that the appointments, were a safe space where I could talk about anything, which really helped a lot. I liked how I was encouraged to attend courses that were outside of my comfort zone, which I am really glad I did as if I hadn’t, I would still be in the same place I was twelve months ago.’

If you are unemployed or inactive, 16+, with a health condition and live in the Atlantic & Moor area; we can support you to positively progress in your life into employment. Please call Nikki on 07909 933721 nicola.speer@cswgroup.co.uk or Jennie 07786 171218 jennie.lacey@cswgroup.co.uk

The Health Works for Cornwall project is part funded by the European Social Fund, with Cornwall Council being principal match funders. The aim of the project to support 5500 residents of Cornwall and the Isles of Scillies, who are out of work and have a health-related barrier to employment to move closer towards or into employment.