“My day usually starts with me coming into the office and chatting to my work colleagues about the day ahead. I spend some time reading through my emails, and text messages – responding to those that I can and collating a to-do list for those I may need to do more research on before I can respond. The to-do list also contains any outstanding or ongoing tasks from the previous day, and I make sure I prioritise the list so I know I’ll get through the immediate/time sensitive tasks first.
The next job of the day is meeting a prospective participant for a suitability assessment. This is where we check to make sure they’re ready and keen to move forward. I then ring up the DWP on his behalf to solve a query that he had and looked for community walks that he could join as he suffers from social isolation but is keen to re-join the community and meet new people whilst enjoying his favourite hobby. I collate some options and send everything to him in the post as he has limited ICT skills. I also send out an application form to refer him to talking therapies so he can access some counselling.
A few days ago I had a request from one of my participants to change his end employment goal. This is quite common, as sometimes as we progress on the journey a participant will realise what they were originally hoping for isn’t for them afterall as they find something else that sparks their interest more!
For this particular participant he saw some information about an HGV course we are currently offering, and he was keen to learn more as saw it as a perfect fit for him, his lifestyle and family commitments.
I took all the details needed to enrol him on the course and passed everything onto the training provider and took the time to give him a ring and let him know.
Time for a quick cuppa, before heading back to the phone. This time to ring some local training providers to source some face-to-face Functional Skills in Maths and English for a participant who left school with no qualifications. I speak to several providers and find one who can offer her the course she needs.
I love this bit of my job, as I’m then able to ring her and let her know the good news!
I follow the phone call up with an email and include all the information she’ll need. Once she has confirmed this is the path she’d like to go down, I’m able to refer her to the training provider.
I break for lunch, before beginning some digital community engagement work via Facebook. We have our own South Tyneside Facebook page and MOTW Facebook profiles, so I’m able to network with local businesses, services, charitable organisations, and community groups to source new referrals.
I then ring a participant to carry out a Progress review as they haven’t been engaging with the programme recently. It turns out they’re just going through a difficult time at home and are still keen to work with MOTW. I update their goals and we agree a time for a follow up conversation once things have settled down.
Two of my participants have asked for my help finding them training courses. One for Computer Programming and one for Mental Health. Our team have a wealth of knowledge in the local South Tyneside area and I’m able to quickly source two appropriate providers and email them to the participants for them to look through.
I finish my day doing some Admin work such as file auditing, scanning documents into MIS (our Management Information System) and updating participants files (we keep both electronic and paper copies). We all take our turn answering the office telephone, and I take a couple of calls during this Admin time as my team mates are all busy on the phone to participants or out on appointments.
Just time to refer another participant of mine onto an ICT course before typing up the last of my paperwork and finishing the day tired, but happy.”