Skills & Employment Training
Despite their circumstances, many of the people who come to NOAH would like to earn money and be more financially independent. Without something meaningful to engage in during the day, many give up hope, assume work is out of reach for them and risk getting caught up in a drinking, drugs and anti-social behavior culture that moves them further away from the prospect of work.
The job market is as competitive as ever and so we want to improve the prospects for people who come to NOAH for help, to give them the chance to fulfil their potential. They range from 18-year olds to people who grew up in families who faced generations of unemployment. Without employment they face an uncertain future, living at best on scarce income and being at risk of homelessness, poverty and exploitation.
Some of the most common barriers to employment include lack of training, no evidence of employment or working in a voluntary capacity, lack of understanding of what is expected of the employee in a working environment and inability to speak English. At the Academy we address these issues and provide extra support in the form of volunteer employment mentors to guide people through the whole process of finding work and keeping it.
Through our Furniture Store, Workshops and Warehouse and our other retail outlets we offer opportunities for people to gain on-the-job skills and experience. This ranges from administration and sales through to warehousing, being a driver’s mate on one of our delivery vans, restoring furniture or servicing domestic appliances.
Everyone who joins the programme gets a uniform. That gives them a sense of value and belonging and helps build up their confidence. Alongside work experience, we provide additional support through basic training in subjects such as health and safety at work and lifting heavy objects.
Our charity shops provide the ideal environment for learning the retail trade. Volunteers get to use the till, bar code and price goods, as well as serving customers and stocktaking.
This practical experience is captured by the Academy team who help volunteers record on their CV’s what they have achieved, together with other relevant information. This, in turn, forms part of pre-employment preparation along with interviewing techniques and personal presentation.