Veteran walks eight miles for work
Terrence served in the Royal Artillery in the late 1970s and early 1980s after a four and half year spell in the TA. When he left the services Terrence took a variety of jobs gaining a wide skill base including security, sales and care work. He was an IT programmer for 14 years, before leaving the profession following a mental breakdown.
Following the loss of his job as a direct sales adviser for Talk Talk in Plymouth, Terrence was determined to overcome his mental and physical health issues and not become reliant on employment support allowance. Terrence opted for Job Seekers Allowance and join the Work Programme delivered by Prospects in Devon.
What Prospects did
Terrence had encountered problems with agencies offering support and was unsure about the Work Programme. However, he worked with his adviser, Naomi, on a one to one basis, attending sessions weekly. The sessions supported Terrence, building his employability skills through CV help and advice, job seeking help, interview practice and improving his confidence and overall outlook. With each session Terrence found he was more able to deal with situations and became more positive.
Keen to manage his own health conditions, Terrence was willing to apply for a wide range of jobs and prepared to travel significant distances to attend interviews. Terrence’s wide experience and adaptability helped him secure several interviews.
Terrence secured a cleaning job with a company in Newton Abbot, eight miles from his home in Paignton. With no transport Terrence is walking the distance and, since starting on Monday, the day after Remembrance Sunday, has already been asked to take on more responsibility. Terrence is covering for the janitor, during a period of absence in addition to his cleaning role, learning to use the industrial cleaning equipment.
Terrence describes himself as a fighter, overcoming his mental and physical health issues, but does not believe others see him for his qualities. Terrence commented: “People just see a label and judge me. At Prospects it was different. They listened and took things on board.”