30 Nov

We have had another busy week at Future Finders and on Wednesday I witnessed a real ‘Wow! moment when I was down at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). As you may know, we have been running our Bridging the Gap Project at MMU for 7 years now and we currently have 3 students based in Manchester at MMU with their job coach, Genna. Last year a number of our Future Finders students accessed placements at the university. On Wednesday I visited our current students and it was a real pleasure to see how well they are all doing on their placements.

So I set off with Genna to see one of our Key Stage 5 pathways students, Lewis, on placement and when I arrived he talked me through his day and told me all about his mentor Kyle… Kyle sets his tasks each day, teaches him new skills and supports him on the job. I was then introduced to a familiar face… Kyle… an ex student who now works full time at the university and has been assigned as Lewis’s mentor! How amazing is that!

Kyle was offered a paid apprenticeship last year and now the process has come full circle and he is taking on the role of student mentor. I really was quite overwhelmed by this. If ever there was a moment where I saw the real impact of our work, it was in that room! I really hope I get the opportunity to take Ofsted to MMU to see this!!! I am so proud of Kyle, not only for getting his job but also for showing Lewis what you can achieve if you put your mind to it… what a role model he is! Also, a huge thank you to MMU who have nurtured the home grown talent from our project. They have invested time and money into our students and are now reaping the rewards. Wow! I am hoping the older I get and the more years I spend at New Bridge, that this will be come the norm! I hope all of our Future Finders students go on to gain jobs and be role models and mentors for future students..

With that, I will hand you over to Anne-Marie for an update on our students this week…

Another busy week at Medtia for our Future Finders! Monday as always is our classroom day, working on our Maths and English Functional Skills. We started the day off with Maths, looking at pay slips and the information that you might find on them and what it means – very important for when we get our first jobs. 

We are continuing to cover Health and Safety in the workplace in our Employability session, including the Health and Safety at Work Act and how it applies to both ourselves as employees and to employers. This week we looked in details at the procedures we would need to follow in various emergency situations and Chloe did a great job leading part of the lesson..

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday continue to be our placement days. One of our many roles as Job Coaches is to continue to build our working relationships with our employers. Here is some feedback we have received this week:

Afsana is doing great! We have given her a staff badge this week and she has extended her placement days. She is quiet but confident in her abilities. ~ Carol (Manager) at The Childcare Village

Sebastian continues to impress at Age UK and his new befriending placement at Stoneswood Care Home where he has settled in brilliantly.

Edward is still undertaking 2 placements a week; he is really enjoying his new role at the Atrium Café helping them with their stocktakes, putting their stock in order and carefully updating the paperwork that the café has to complete. In addition, Edward has been very busy completing the patient packs for the Royal Oldham Hospital – this week we have delivered over 200 hundred packs back to the hospital!

Gary is doing a fantastic job with the Environmental Services in Fitton Hill, so much so that we are just in the process of confirming an extension of his placement there into the New Year.

Tara has begun a new placement this week at a new café, ‘Naughty But Nice’ in Shaw. I will leave it up to Tara to tell you all about this in her ‘Day In the Life’ – over to you, Tara!

A day in the life of Tara
Naughty But Nice Café, Shaw

I have started my new placement at the ‘Naughty But Nice Café’ in Shaw town centre..

I arrive at work around 10am, place my belongings in the store cupboard, collect my apron and wash my hands ready to start the day..

I serve on the till writing orders ready to be taken to the kitchen with support from staff and I make the customers’ brew orders..

I also help the staff in the kitchen when possible to cook food orders and when the orders are ready, I take the food to the tables..

I continue to do this throughout the day, as well as general cleaning duties of the café such as cleaning tables, washing up and general housekeeping.

Sam, the manager, said,

“Tara is brilliant, it’s like she has been here ages! She has shown good understanding of what needs to be completed and she is always willing to have a go at all the jobs.”

All in a day’s work!

We have made some more fantastic relationships with employers, providing new opportunities for our young people but, to keep you all in suspense, we will tell you more about that next week!!

We only have three weeks of term left and the students are now starting to think about their next placements. Our job coaches will be in touch to ensure that you are all kept in the loop around our choices moving into term two.

I’d like to finish this week with a bit of a plea.. we would like to set up a parent employer network where parents and representatives from business meet termly to discuss how we can extend our range of work experience placements and employer encounters. This could be co-ordinating visits to your place of work or arranging work experience placements for students within our Group. We are looking for parents to join this forum who are employed in ANY sector. If you are interested, please contact our work placement co-ordinator Maria for further information – her email is mstatham@newbridgegroup.org or you can call her on 0161 883 2403.

Have a wonderful weekend,

Daniel
Head of College

You can view our previous blog entries here

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