Jobseeker Paul Allchurch has found work with the NHS thanks to support from Carmarthenshire’s Lift programme – one of more than 100 people helped into employment.

Lift was launched in March 2014 and to date has worked with 350 clients, including helping 106 into employment and supporting 204 through training.

The programme delivered by Carmarthenshire County Council supports individuals from workless households in the Carmarthenshire Communities First Cluster to secure employment and training opportunities. The Welsh Government funded project is part of the Welsh tackling poverty strategy and is one element of a much wider portfolio of back to employment work support programmes delivered by the county council.

Paul was enrolled by Lift staff through outreach work in a local Communities First job club in Pantyffynnon. He has been engaged with the Communities First Programme since 2002 and has also received support from the Communities First Team through accessing accredited training and support in Employment Clubs in Pantyffynnon.

During his enrolment and action planning session it was identified that Paul aspired to work part time in admin and clerical work. He made it clear that he was feeling stuck in a rut regarding his job searching and didn’t know how to access opportunities in his local area without support.

Although he had several work related qualifications he was lacking confidence and work experience necessary to get back into paid work. Together Paul and his mentor decided that a voluntary admin role would be a good first step. This would raise his confidence, teach him new skills and get him back into a working routine.

A suitable role was identified within the Un Sir Gar Hub in Llanelli which provides one stop drop-in service for the community, providing information, support and sign posting to a wide range of services such as housing, employment support and benefit advice.

Lift mentor Elliott Boyd said: “Paul’s confidence and experience grew immensely and his work was always to a high standard. This increased his confidence in job hunting.”

Following this placement Paul was referred to the NHS for a second placement in Amman Valley hospital as a clerical officer. The placement was extremely successful and Paul remained as a volunteer in the same role.

He continued to apply for paid work in the Carmarthenshire area, moving to Carmarthen to be closer to work opportunities. After several interviews and support with interview prep from the Lift Programme, Paul was finally successful in obtaining paid work in Carmarthen as a Peer Mentor for Hywel Dda University Health Board/NHS.

Paul said ‘’I am so happy, as it is what I have been aiming for for such a long time’.

Cllr Cefin Campbell, who is the Carmarthenshire County Council executive board member with responsibility for tackling poverty, said: “The Lift programme plays a valuable role in supporting people through training and helping them into work.

“I’m delighted that Paul has been able to use the support of the Lift programme to build his confidence and experience and go on to find work.”

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