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Ellie's Story - Working Newcastle programme at Capability’s

Ellie's Story - Working Newcastle programme at Capability’s

Ellie is 16 years old.  After leaving school Ellie has joined the Working Newcastle programme at Capability’s.

“I started looking at different kinds of jobs on the internet to try and figure out what career I wanted.”

What were your worries about getting into work?

When I was at school I didn’t really think about getting a job or my future gaining employment until the teachers explained that I couldn’t stay at school for the rest of my life.

I started to worry about my sexuality being a barrier, alongside my learning disability, and that people would judge my character on these two factors.  I thought looking for paid employment would be pointless as no one would employ me and this resulted in me losing confidence and not having a clue about my future.

What have you done so far to get nearer to work?

Having spoken to a teacher about my worries we came up with the idea of founding a LGBT group at school so that others in my situation would have more confidence to figure out the best route of gaining paid employment when they left school. I ran this group for 11 months and this helped me realise that I should start to think about my own future.

The Supported Employment Service, helped me to complete a CV to apply for jobs. At first I did not want to do this but during its completion I came to realise that I have much to offer the world of work.

My key worker at Capability’s has been talking to me about finding an external work placement in the local community and while I am still weary of this I have agreed to try it.

When I first started at Capability’s I would not have considered trying a new placement but as my belief in myself grows I am beginning to think that I should give it a go when I feel ready.

Who has helped you?

My mum, the Supported Employment Service, Capability’s

What have you learned along the way?

I was unsure that I would ever be able to get paid employment due to my lack of confidence. Since I started Capability’s I have gained many new skills and found that I excel in serving customers in the reception area even though I’m still nervous when dealing with new people.

I have also come to realise that the barriers I worried most about, such as my sexual orientation, are not barriers at all. This was a big factor in building my confidence while working towards gaining paid employment.  

Having spoken to my peers within the supported employment team I have come to realise that everyone worries about starting new things and that this should not stop me from trying.

My hopes for the future

I am continuing to explore the many different options for paid employment. I am gaining a realistic idea of the world of work and hope to start applying for paid employment in the near future.

I have very recently agreed to try a work experience placement in the local community and am looking forward to the new challenge.