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Stuart reluctantly joined the Work and Health programme in May 2021. From the start, he was not engaged and there were many failed attempts to try and contact him. His Employment Coach, Sam, persevered and eventually made contact.

“Stuart had been unemployed on and off throughout the last 20 years with little bits of work here and there, he had also been a single parent to 2 children.

“Stuart admits himself that he had gotten himself into a ‘rut’ and encountered deep days of depression where he wouldn’t talk to anyone. He told me how unmotivated he felt and that he had not been applying for any jobs in over 12 months.

“During the first call with Stuart, he expressed he would like to do driving, own his own cab, do school runs etc but had made no enquiries into how he could achieve this. I explained to him that there would be checks he would need to get done for example his DBS. Stuart had not considered how he would achieve his goals , he simply thought he could just buy a car and start driving so it was a reality check for him when he realised he would need to obtain a license to be able to drive for example a taxi, plus a DBS if he wanted to work with children.

“I asked Stuart to think about what we had discussed, and we would discuss it in a weeks time.

“During our next call, Stuart expressed that he felt he had been given a ‘kick’ and he had spent the last week digesting what we had previously discussed. He said it was the ‘kick’ he needed and he asked for all the help we could offer him to help him achieve his driving goals.

“I discussed with Stuart that we were currently working with an employer who were looking for new ‘Home to Schools drivers’ and I could arrange an interview for him. Stuart expressed how keen he was for this to happen. Very quickly, an interview was arranged which Stuart attended and was immediately offered a position with the company, pending the relevant checks!

“A DBS application was submitted for which Prospect Training Services paid for and Stuart was put forward for his Hackney License.

“Success shortly followed, DBS checks completed and passed, and Stuart also passed and acquired his Hackney License and did his PATS training.

“Stuart started driving for the company on 6th July 2021 and was given a company vehicle!

“During a follow-on call with Stuart, he expressed how grateful he was to myself and Prospect Training Services for the opportunity to support him back into work, in a job he really wanted to do. He says he feels so motivated now and he couldn’t understand why he had ‘done nothing’. He is looking forward to the future and has plans to start his own taxi service going alongside his new position.

“He told me he now has a purpose to get up in the morning, he enjoys going out again and seeing people. In Stuarts words, “This programme did me the world of good; a big thankyou to you Sam.”

In partnership with Prospect Training Services. The Work and Health programme is funded by the Department for Work and Pensions and the European Social Fund. Stock image used.

Area: Gloucestershire

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