Glenorchy Workclub in 2019
Now we are well and truly into 2020 I thought we should take a look back at 2019 and review the year as a whole.
In April 2019 we held our annual Job Fair. This is a good opportunity for those looking for work and also those looking to change direction, to engage with employers, support and training organisations, both on a local and national level. It proved very successful, with more providers attending than ever before, which made for a very busy day.
Numbers of clients attending throughout the year have stabilised around 20 to 25 per session, made up of regular visitors and new clients who may only attend for a few weeks, before moving on to pastures new.
We have been fortunate to be supported on a regular basis by outside agencies such as The Royal British Legion, Careers Southwest, Elite Training and South West Water, to name a few. This gives our clients the opportunity of seeking advice at first hand without the need to travel to Exeter.
Although we hear many in government circles stating unemployment is at its lowest since the early 1970’s, we live in an uncertain world which, for some people, can change overnight. The Work Club is able to offer a ‘sanctuary’ where clients can enjoy a calm, non-judgemental, welcoming environment, which is not available elsewhere in Exmouth. None of this would be possible however, without the support of our volunteers who turn out on a regular basis. We have had some come and go throughout the year in 2019; I would like to thank every one for their time and effort, whatever their role within the Work Club.
That said, we are in need of more volunteers to carry on the good work, so if you know of anyone from inside or outside the Church who has the time and commitment to join us, then we would very much like to hear from them. Let’s hope we all have a positive 2020 within the Work Club, whatever it brings us!
Jobfair 2019 – a volunteer’s impressions
In June we had a report from Simon about the Work Club Job Fair in April. Here is a personal impression from one of the volunteers:
By about 10.30 the Jobfair was buzzing with potential clients coming in to see what was going on and being warmly greeted by ‘Meet and Greet’ volunteers at the door. Quite a number of clients were already employed but were looking to find other or additional work for many and varied reasons, e.g. a chef wanting to reduce her hours even though she still enjoyed making use of her qualifications in food preparation; a furniture restorer needing to take a part -time job to supplement his income.
Another woman whom none of us had seen before came in but seemed frightened when one of us spoke to her. One of the ’greeters’ noticed her anxious appearance as she approached the door to leave and, being an empathetic person, judged that a hug may encourage the woman to return. Such a warm gesture may be entirely inappropriate with other potential clients, but in this case her judgement was correct and a little later the woman ventured back in.
At the same time a lot of networking was taking place between employers and support agencies; all seemed to find it a useful occasion to exchange information about services. Bryony from CSW (Careers South West) and Chris from South West Water who regularly visit the Work Club were making new contacts with staff from other support agencies and employers or perhaps meeting existing contacts for the first time in person.
It seemed to me a very worthwhile event. Thanks, as ever, to Jenny for her organisation of the catering on top of all the other duties she performs, and thanks also to Simon and all the volunteers who contributed to its success.
Lynette Madelin, Work Club volunteer
23 Organisations were represented at our annual Job Fair, which was an excellent turn out. This year I was keen to have a mix of Employers, Recruitment Companies, Training and Support Agencies. The reason is that many of our clients may well not be job ready, as they need to have their ‘House in order’ before they are able to seek work with the full commitment that’s required. Healthy mind, healthy body, as the saying goes. Job searching is a job in itself!
The morning went well with the Job Fair being opened by the Town Crier, who went on into the town to try and drum up business on our behalf! A big thank you to Sandy from Elite Training and Bryony from Careers South West, who did exactly the same, dragging several people in off the streets! On the previous Sunday I had a spot on Exmouth Air to promote the Fair, which was also ‘plugged’ again when the Job Fair was in full swing on the day. Many thanks to Chris from South West Water for helping with this.
There was a great deal of activity throughout the morning, and several compliments were made by the exhibitors, many of which expressed a wish to return on our weekly sessions. The Exmouth Journal ran the article I wrote for them, with extra pictures in their ‘on line’ edition.
One last note on the Job Fair – A big thank you to all those who helped on the day, be it front of house, in the kitchen with the teas/coffees, or just mixing with the clients, and exhibitors, for many of whom it was their first time at the Glenorchy Job Club.