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Kirsty finds a pathway to work experience

Kirsty Fowler has gained qualifications and secured a work experience placement at the Job Centre in Redhill following support from ESRA (Employment Support Retraining Agency) and Raven’s Pathway to Employment programme.

After leaving her partner and moving into emergency housing, single mum Kirsty struggled to find a career path that was right for her.

“My work history and background was in care work, but I wanted a complete change in my life,” said Kirsty.

Kirsty was first referred to the programme by Reigate and Banstead Women’s Aid (RBWA), who provide refuge for women and children fleeing domestic abuse.

“With the help of the programme and Judy, my amazing careers adviser from ESRA, I was able to explore options that led me to study for a course in Computer Studies at East Surrey College,” she said.

Kirsty completed her course in Computer Studies in record time with outstanding results. The Pathways programme provided Kirsty with a laptop that she needed to practice her new skills. She was also enrolled on a one-day adult beauty and spa course to keep her work options open.

“Gaining qualifications completely changed my outlook on life and now feel like I have the tools, skills, and confidence to go and find work,” she said.

With support from Judy, and her newfound confidence, Kirsty approached the Job Centre in Redhill for work experience. She was offered a placement and now works at the Job Centre three days a week helping others with job applications and CV writing.

Having found work experience and direction in her own life, Kirsty now hopes to extend her placement at the Job Centre, and take more IT qualifications to progress her career.

East Surrey Pathway to Employment is a partnership funded by the European Social Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund. Amongst its range of services it also provides online support and training, assistance with childcare, advice on financial management, physical well-being courses, access to job clubs and in-work support.

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