TOPPS for the Community CIC received their Black Country ESF Community Grant in October 2018, to provide support for 30 beneficiaries who have complex barriers to work and aims to build confidence, presentation skills and self-awareness.
The project enables participants to identify career options that they want to pursue further through comprehensive information, advice and guidance sessions. In addition to this, participants benefit from a Level 2 Peer Mentor and access to suitable volunteering placements.
The project is delivering successfully here is one of their participants journey.
When entering the project Kieran hoped to gain employment in the field of vulnerable adults and addiction and had a variety of barriers that stopped him moving towards this goal. He completed the Widening Horizons project and gained a Level 2 Peer Mentor Qualification. He has previously volunteered within addiction services and at a night shelter supporting the homeless, so this qualification built on this significantly.
He said of the project -“I learned new skills on how to apply mentoring. I made some new friends and the fact that my first job interview in 17 years was during my Level 2 Mentoring course I believe it helped me secure my first job ever at 40. The approach TOPPS took by teaching in small groups and short 3-day courses was ideal for me, as I have ADHD and Bi-Polar disorder. I feel honored to one of the last lucky few to benefit from the course because without it I don’t think I would have gone into employment so quickly. I did the course and was employed before the certificate even came back!”