A jobs fair in Lynn aimed at bringing long-term unemployed people and employers together has resulted in more than 20 people being invited for interviews.
The event, which attracted around 70 jobseekers, was hosted by employment and skills specialists Ingeus at their office in Railway Road.
Ingeus delivers the government’s Work Programme throughout the region, which aims to support people who face barriers to employment.
Among those attending was 43-year-old Nick Whiley, from North Lynn. Until recently, Nick had been without a job since being a passenger in a minibus accident some time ago which tragically killed several of his friends. “The mental scars from that day remain with me,” he said. “My general health spiralled as depression set in, which left me with no confidence in myself. While I really wanted to work to support my children, quite often I was unable to leave the house.”
Nick was referred by Jobcentre Plus in Lynn for specialist support, which was delivered by a team of Ingeus’s health and wellbeing experts and employment advisors. Between them, they helped Nick overcome obstacles he never thought possible.
“I have recently started working in a major warehouse, but wanted to be here at the fair to tell others that anything is possible,” he added. “I really believed I was unemployable but Ingeus proved me wrong, and I am now enjoying earning my own wage and all the freedom that brings.”
Amongst the employers attending the jobs fair was Aleksandra Wojcieszak, an accounts coordinator for High Street-based Berry Recruitment. She said: “We’re always on the lookout for people to fill vacancies in a number of sectors, including driving, carers, industrial, office work and construction. We went to the jobs fair in the hope of meeting people who are ready to be employed and we were not disappointed and we’re now about to arrange job interviews.”
Sharif Sharif is Ingeus’s performance and delivery manager in Norfolk. He said: “As ever, we rose to the challenge of introducing our clients to them and the result is that people’s lives will change for the better as a result of going to the jobs fair. My colleagues here at Ingeus worked hard to arrange the day and they are thrilled that it was such a positive experience.”