Stroke survivor back in work

A Northampton customer who recently suffered a stroke has just secured employment thanks to our partners at The Mallows Company. Here's what they had to say: 

"I started the Links to Work ESF funded programme with Greg at The Mallows Company in May 2017. I had been out of work since the beginning of 2016 after a stroke. My confidence was low and I was not sure if I was able to return to work, certainly not the sort of demanding catering roles I used to undertake.

But slowly with Greg’s support my confidence improved, not just in relation to looking for work online (my ICT skills were limited), but also regarding believing in my self and actually “seeing” myself back in the workplace. Greg would look for job roles with me, some in catering but others too, such as light cleaning or retail roles. We also began to explore possible care work, or working with children in schools, perhaps as a Lunchtime Supervisor.

If Greg found a role for me he would never push me into applying. He would ask me if I was interested and encourage me but he recognised I was trying to find my feet again and that I was really looking for something part time, certainly to begin with.

Slowly I gained the confidence to start dropping my CV in at different places too – Greg had helped me with this. Also, I began to get some interviews and Greg helped me prepare. He also suggested that I look at some volunteering and I volunteered at a charity shop to begin with and then at a day centre for the elderly. I started to see that I had something to offer in the workplace again and it was good to meet new people.

Eventually I made an enquiry at a local school. In November last year about some work, handed in my CV and got an interview. I was then delighted to get the role of Lunchtime Supervisor for about 5 hours a week.

Greg kept applying for roles for me as my plan was to try to come off benefits by doing around 16 hours a week and often his applications and cover letters would lead at least to an initial enquiry by phone or email, if not an interview too. I began to feel more in control of my situation, once effectively turning an employer down as I felt that the work (in a busy café) might be a step too far for me after my health issues.

I have now secured around 20 hours a week in a retail role in Towcester.  Again, I had the confidence to hand my CV in when I saw that there was a vacancy and the CV Greg had prepared for me, and my improved interview skills, paid off for me. This is all very different to a few months ago before Greg started supporting me so I am very happy with the Links to Work programme."

If you're keen to get back into work but just need that little bit of support – signup for our free employment training programme and we'll work with you to overcome your barriers to work and get you the job you want. 

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*The customer requested we protect their identity.