The Employability Team supports the long-term unemployed, and helps people to access skills, training, opportunities and jobs.
You can read some real-life good news stories here, to hear the stories of some of the participants we have supported into employment.
Participant signed up for Fair Start Scotland following his release in February of that year from a custodial sentence, he had previously been employed for 25 years with the same employer.
He had relocated to a different area following his release and was keen to secure employment. He required support to manage his criminal record while pursuing employment. Participant had no other barriers, had a very good skills set and regularly attended his Fair Start Scotland weekly appointments. Key Worker advised and ‘soft counselled’ participant during this period as he felt, though keen to move on, emotionally he had to give himself time to adapt and come to terms with what had happened to him in the recent past. He felt that attending Fair Start Scotland allowed him to feel supported, not judged and provided a holistic approach to where he was at with gentle guidance to move forward one step at a time.
His Key Worker provided contact details for Clean Sheet, an organisation who works with employers and ex-offenders to facilitate a process of communicating with employers who are committed to giving ‘second chances’ to ex-offenders. Participant wanted to approach this opportunity himself which he did by email and phone calls and was successful in both telephone and one-to-one interviews with a company employing 15,000 globally, involved in producing and packaging supermarket food.
Participant felt anxious and nervous about securing employment as this meant moving outwith Argyll and Bute. Several discussions took place during his weekly appointments and his Key Worked advised of local removal firms, costs and general advice on giving up his tenancy. Participant understandably nervous but realised he had to take these steps to move forward and secure a fresh start.
Participant is doing very well in employment, his Key Worker is providing monthly In Work Support, at his request this is carried out by emails and texts.
Participant had been unemployed for 4 years prior to signing up for Fair Start Scotland. She had returned from living abroad, where she taught Additional Support Needs, to care for her ailing mother. Her mother has since moved to a care home. Having recently moved to the Argyll and Bute area, the participant suffered from feelings of isolation and anxiety, extremely low self-esteem and confidence issues. Unsure where to turn to for help, she approached her local Argyll and Bute Council Service Point to ask for advice on what was available locally to support her journey back to work. Due to the Employability Team marketing of the Fair Start Scotland programme, Service Point staff directed the participant to an Employability Team Key Worker.
During her weekly 1-1 appointments the participant received motivational and confidence building sessions with her Key Worker. Better off calculations were carried out along with job searching activities, job application support and mock interview techniques. After completing two job applications, the participant attended two interviews in the same week and was successful with both! She accepted the post of Pupil Assistant Teacher at a local school.
She has been further supported by the Employability Team through financial assistance with registration fees and new footwear. Participant was keen to maintain regular contact with Key Worker and has received weekly In Work Support since commencing employment, through face to face, phone and email contact.
Participant is thrilled with the support she has received from her Key Worker and has been quoted as saying, “My life has completely changed and I feel that without your help and support and the opportunity afforded by Fair Start Scotland I would not be where I am today”.
Participant signed up for Fair Start Scotland after being unemployed for over a year due to ill health. Participant had heard about the service through a leaflet received along with his annual council tax bill. He phoned Argyll and Bute Council Employability Team directly to ask for further information, spoke with Key Worker and this resulted in participant wishing to sign up for Fair Start Scotland.
Participant was feeling quite low due to lack of job opportunities on the island and his confidence had taken a severe knock. As he had no computing skills whatsoever, Key Worker arranged basic computing training for him with Community Learning. Key Worker helped prepare a CV for him and job-search activity took place each week at his Fair Start Scotland as he had no other access to a computer.
Key Worker supported participant to apply online for job at his local Co-op. She helped him access his emails to check for job application replies, helped arrange time/date for interview then assisted him with interview techniques training.
Participant attended interview and was successful in gaining the job. He is delighted with the service he has received whilst on Fair Start Scotland and says it has surpassed any expectation he had, especially in terms of how quickly he has successfully moved into employment. The support received from his Key Worker has been exemplary and he is keen to continue contact through weekly In Work Support calls/texts to help with his transition back to work. Participant said he would never have applied for the position if it had not been for the support and encouragement received from his Key Worker.