Lucy: My name is Lucy, I have a condition called Elhers-Danlos Syndrome which means my joints are very loose an unstable and prone to dislocation.
At the beginning of my entrance into the world of work I was considered to be non-disabled because my condition back then was invisible. It wasn't difficult for me to get jobs but as my condition started to deteriorate, I was asked by an employer why I had applied for the job and why I didn't just stay on benefits instead.
I heard about Support to Work just after just after it was rolled out, I saw an advert on Facebook and I thought "oh, what's this?". At the time i was not in the best place with looking for work, I had been unemployed for sometime and I thought "you know what? What the hell have I got to lose?"
Mwila: So, during the initial conversations we create and action plan, which are actions we aim to achieve every week. So each week we have a catch up to see what has been done based on the previous actions set. But the action plan can be 12 actions long, it could be 24 actions long or it could be just one action that the customer would like to achieve over the course of the twelve weeks.
Lucy: My CV wasn't attracting the attention of employers in a good way, so we tidied up my CV, we ended up writing a cover letter together, which ended up being really nice and we'd speak the kind of jobs I'd applied for, what response I'd had, What follow up I'd done. And it was very much a nice balance between, me knowing he wasn't going to find me a job, but also, I wasn't relying too heavily on him.
Mwila: I think my favourite part of the role is the feeling you get from making a difference to people's lives. Getting that feedback when people tell you you've made a difference to their lives by helping them find employment, when they had given up hope.
Narrator: Support to Work involves, digital, online support, a 12 week action plan and can be found in England and Wales.
Find out how we can support you to get into, stay in and progress in work.