Participant gains employment for first time in 11 years

Carers Support Centre, one of the West of England Works Thematic Anchor Partners have been producing fantastic results for the project and have successfully managed to guide one of their participants to employment for the first time in 11 years.

The West of England Works project is a partnership which aims to help unemployed and economically inactive people in the region find employment. Led by Weston College, the partnership includes a range of voluntary and community organisations across the West. The project has received £6 million of funding from the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund and is part of the Building Better Opportunities programme.

Gary was an extremely determined participant who had not applied for a job since 2005, having spent 11 years caring for his mum. After receiving an email from Carers Support Centre, he got in touch and met the team.

Gary said: “The team were brilliant, they supported me with updating my CV in terms of layout, style and presentation.

“What I liked most about the project was that the staff listened, gave great recommendations and I felt part of the process from the get-go.”

Gary had a personal goal of achieving part time employment which would then allow him to continue with his caring duties.

After applying for several jobs Gary successfully managed to land an interview, and after receiving advice on how to prepare, as well as being dressed to impress, he was offered a job.

Gary commented: “The project gave me a boost in confidence and provided me with the support that I needed to help me get back on the career ladder, after facing fear surrounding getting a job after such a long break from employment.

“The project certainly works and proves that it’s ok to be afraid but never let the fear stop you. I can still care and I feel I can handle the pressures that brings with a fresh perspective by this new beginning.”

Matt Hempstock, West of England Works Project Co-ordinator, explains that: “this project is producing inspiring stories and I am so glad for Gary that we have been able to support him on his journey.”

If you would like the support of Carers Support Centre you can contact them on 0117 377 1015, or email them at