Local hospice supports unemployed

Categories: Community Engagement.

The hospice is participating in a scheme with the Job Centre and other organisations to offer full-time paid apprenticeships for unemployed young people aged between 16 and 24 to enhance their CV, gain qualifications, and improve their employability by providing the experience of working as part of a dedicated team. 

Natalie Blake, aged 18, from Spennymoor, joined St Cuthbert’s Hospice last year as a healthcare apprentice. Natalie says: “My apprenticeship started last October and I have loved every second of it. I am based within the inpatient unit at St Cuthbert’s and work with our patients on a daily basis. Learning from the qualified nurses and healthcare assistants who are around me means I am learning at a faster rate than what I would if I was just in the classroom, and I am developing the key skills I need to fulfil my ambition to go to university to train to be a nurse.”

St Cuthbert’s is also offering work placement programmes for adults of any age. Running for a minimum of eight weeks, the placements allow participants to receive training as well as gain valuable work experience. They can also help minority groups such as those dealing with mental health issues and disabilities to boost their confidence and self esteem.

Robert, aged 25, from Bishop Auckland, chose to work in the hospice’s finance department. He completed the AAT Level 2 course that supported his accountancy studies at college, and is now going on to complete his AAT Level 3. Robert said: “I enjoyed my time in work placement at St Cuthbert’s and it also proved to be an invaluable experience for me. Not only could I put my studies into practice and gain hands on skills, it also helped me secure full-time employment elsewhere once my placement was over.”

Karen Grigg, HR Manager at St Cuthbert’s Hospice, said: “We receive an enormous amount of support from our local community and we are delighted to offer work placements to local people as a way of giving back. I hope we have some more success stories to report on in the future.”

Current vacancies for apprenticeships and work placements are advertised on St Cuthbert’s website. For more information on the programme, email Vicky Walker or call her on 0191 386 1170.

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