16 Oct

This week we hear from two of our job coaches, starting with Maria..

Another week passes up at Pennine House and our classroom is now looking fabulous. We have completed all the display boards with our employability work and the students have been learning about and collected all the information for us to display. They have been looking at cover letters, CV writing, interview skills, professionalism, personal hygiene, health and safety in the workplace and job searching. They have been learning about the world of work and the many different roles and the skills and qualities needed to fulfil the different roles.

We have Luka at David Lloyd Gym who is working hard with his job coach serving food, helping in the kitchen and in the café. He arrives looking smart and ready for work and has already had some great feedback from the staff. He is also following Covid rules and wearing a mask, gloves and a plastic apron to carry out his tasks. Well done Luka.

I have accessed the brilliant initiative set up by the Bridging the Gap students this week who are taking appointments for car valeting on our site. I was really pleased with the result; my car looks amazing inside and out and I was very impressed with the professional way they went about their jobs. Thank you everyone.

Our job coach Diane has been supporting two of our students on their new work placements..

A new academic term has started and during this time everyone has been assigned to staying in our bubbles. Students have worked on their Employability skills, Maths and English.

Two of our students have been given the opportunity to go on work placement, which in the current situation has proved a lifeline for them to access employment and continue to develop their work skills.

Jade has started a new placement at Scope and has attended for the last two weeks, the first week she was a little nervous meeting all the staff and volunteers and wondering what the job entailed but she has settled in really well.

When we turn up each morning, Jade always says ‘Omg, not more bags arriving!’ as we no sooner get the new donations cleared than more appear. Jade has shown great commitment and has showed she is capable of helping and working independently once shown how to do a task. Jade has covered sorting bags and bags – and I mean a whole building full of bags!

Jade then puts each item on a hanger with a tag identifying whether it’s male/female clothing and the appropriate size for re-sale before it is sent for steaming and sorting. Jade has also worked in the shop and again this involves quite a difficult process of sorting and removing ex-stock which is on a two-week cycle, all colour coded on the hangers. Jade is able to identify which goods have to be bagged and then sent to the Bury shop.

Jade likes to work on her own and feels confident enough to engage in conversations with the various members of staff which changes daily. There are plenty of volunteers who help in the shop and I am really pleased with how Jade has engaged in conversation them.

She has an excellent work ethic and I am delighted with her commitment to just getting on with the job. Well done Jade, you have done really well in your first two weeks. Let’s see what next Monday brings – you already know, “more bags!”.

Jermaine also started at the Scope Charity Shop last week. Initially he found it difficult to engage and interact with staff and he found it strange working on the jewellery section. On his second week, I have to say that he has totally amazed me with how he has changed and got stuck in, I can’t believe how much work he gets done in one day.

As previously mentioned, there are so many bags being donated and left in the shop. Jermaine spent the whole morning carrying the bric-a-brac bags upstairs ready for sorting. Jermaine even said ‘This is the sort of work I like to do’, I think he means physical work rather than tagging the jewellery which he did in the first week.

On his second day, he moved all the shelving and restacked it, having to move all the clothing off the rails and sort it ready for the shop floor. Jermaine took all the toys and boxes off shelves and made the area safe.

Jermaine also cleaned the whole of the top floor using the vac and made the place nice and tidy, especially the area where we have our lunch. He said his Nana would be ‘well proud’ of him – well you know what’s coming at home now Jermaine!

(A picture tells a thousand words)

I am really impressed with his willingness to help. Caroline, the shop manager, also commented and thanked him for carrying all the heavy bags upstairs and all for a good cause. Well done Jermaine, you should feel very proud of yourself.

We are all looking forward to another busy week before we break up for half term!

I hope you have a lovely weekend, take care.

Jaina and the Team

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