Kuhenara was out of work for 14 years and came to GRoW after unsuccessfully applying for jobs for more than 2 years. She has now joined the NHS Vaccination Programme in an Admin position.
Kuhenara said “I left my job in Finance 14 years ago because I had a son with special needs who needed my support. During that time I undertook some courses like sewing, just to pass the time and to do something I enjoyed, but it was some time before I was ready to starting preparing to go back to work.
I decided to do a 3 year AAT Accounting Course to strengthen my position in finance should I want to return to that type of work but soon after I finished the course and started job searching the pandemic hit and the world became a very different place. I felt the 14 years I had out of work had really displaced me and I felt unemployable. I was submitting my CV but I wasn’t get an interview or even a call back – nothing! I was unsuccessful in every job application I made and it was very disheartening and demoralising.
My Job Coach at the job centre reviewed my CV but it didn’t make a difference. She put me in touch with GRoW and then things started to improve for me and I began to flourish. I didn’t believe it at first, after looking for a job for two years and getting nowhere I thought I was beyond help but GRoW really surprised me. As soon as I got in touch with them my motivation began to grow and I began to feel more positive. Liz invited me to the Coffee Mornings where I could meet other women who in similar positions to myself. I had started to feel quite low at times, being at home, but even having the Coffee Morning to look forward to every Friday was giving me a boost. All of these opportunities were starting to come my way, I began doing a few courses and then some more and it was really boosting my confidence. I did the CV writing and Interview Skills courses where I could practice real-life scenarios which I thought was fantastic.
GRoW had all the right advice and seemed to know exactly what I needed to do and then made it possible for me. Liz told me about the NHS vaccination programme and I thought it was too good to be true. There was no requirement for an interview and the fact that I had been out of work for 14 years wasn’t a problem. They were providing full training and the job offered flexible hours of working. It was precisely what I needed. GRoW supported me with the application and when I was offered the job it was just wonderful!
Whilst I was applying for the vaccination programme Liz asked me if I would be interested in training to work in the employability sector. I thought it sounded really interesting and from looking at the job sites I could see that GRoW were right when they said that this was a growing job opportunity, there were lots of jobs being advertised for employability practitioners. I was very impressed that GRoW were able to advise me on up and coming opportunities and they had a really good understanding of the type of job that would suit me.
I started my job as a Vaccination Administrator a few weeks ago. It is long hours but I am really enjoying it. The people are really nice and it was exactly what I needed to start over again. I now have recent work experience to put on my CV and I have started the IEP Accredited Sector Learning course which I am doing in between working. This will hopefully help me when if I need look for a more permanent job in the future although I am hoping I can remain within the NHS now. I am able to get information about NHS job vacancies from their internal system and there are so many varied roles within the NHS, it’s not just for doctors and nurses, there are admin and resources jobs and lots more and you don’t need to be a graduate or degree educated. I am looking at all of these jobs and thinking of applying if my current role comes to an end.
My job works very well with my family life balance, I get to pick and choose what days I want to work and I even get onsite parking!
I am so thankful to GRoW. I am amazed at how they managed to do things which I didn’t think was doable. I was beginning to think I would ever get a job but it all changed for me when I joined GRoW. I had reached a point where I was feeling so down, I had been a mum for 20 years and my whole life was focused on the kids. I really needed something for me and to get out in the world again. I feel quite career minded now and want to do work where I feel I am making a difference and it doesn’t get much better than being part of the NHS’s vaccination programme.”