Erin: My name is Erin Maltas and I have Aspergers syndrome. I started looking for work when I left college. When I was at the job centre I had a meeting with my work coach, she put me on the phone and that's how I got to find out about Starting Line and that how I got on to the programme.
Starting Line is good because you get to meet people in a similar situation to you. When you get knocked down a lot your confidence goes and you start feeling really alone and isolated. It seemed like they actually did care and it helped me. It did help me get my confidence higher up.
Andy: The service is a 7-week programme, delivering 14 modules. The modules are 3 and a half hours each. We run 2 modules a week and it's all aimed at helping people who live our area to get back into work, or help them progress in their chosen direction.
Erin: You get help with your interview skills, legal stuff about interviews and what they're technically not allowed to ask you and when you're filling out applications, what you don't have to say. It does boost up your confidence quite a lot which is probably the main thing that I learnt.
Narrator: Starting Line involves, group training as well as one-to-one support, sessions 2 mornings a week for 7 weeks and are located in London, Leeds and Calderdale only.
Find out how we can support you to get into, stay and progress in work.
Starting Line: employment training
Starting Line is a pre-employment training programme for disabled people at the start of their journey into work.
Face to face and group sessions are being moved online and by phone, until further notice. This is in line with Government guidance on the Coronavirus outbreak.
Group training sessions will be:
3 hours per session
2 mornings a week for 7 weeks
around 12 to 14 people per group
The sessions will help you:
grow in confidence, assertiveness and independence
develop your interview skills
find volunteering, training or employment opportunities
talk about disability in the workplace
You will also get one-to-one support from a specialist employment adviser.
The service is available in:
In these boroughs: Brent and Ealing.
North East London
In these boroughs: Camden, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey, Islington, Newham and Waltham Forest.
In the these areas: Leeds, Halifax and Calderdale.
Starting Line is also available in Manchester.
Wales (from April 2020)
In April Starting Line will be available in Wales.