Helping mums get back to paid work
Young mothers will be given a hand on the road to paid work thanks to a new project at Faith in Families. Chief executive, Cherrie Bija, describes how ‘Inspiring Futures’ will help.
The first day in school is often marked as a big occasion as little ones start the next stage of their learning journey. The customary photo on the doorstep or at the school gates, the anxieties as to whether little “Tommy” will cry, will he settle, will he make friends. But what about Mum, what does her future hold now that her role has changed?
In the communities where Faith in Families work approximately 21% of residents are lone parents. The first day in school for them is also a time of adjustment. With nearly half of the area’s population having left school themselves with no qualifications it can be a daunting time when they are no longer a full-time carer and looking for a job can be overwhelming. One in 12 of people in the Penderry Ward in Swansea, where our Teilos Community Cwtch is situated, have never worked and are long-term unemployed. So where and how do they even begin if they have never before written a CV?
Our new Inspiring Futures project funded by the Active Inclusion fund through Wales Council for Voluntary Action is there to engage and support women right at the start of their journey. It aims to encourage women by raising their confidence and aspirations and finding ways to break down any perceived barriers to becoming active members of society.
We will begin with conversations that will increase their ambitions and highlight their skills and interests. Then participants will be supported into volunteering placements and training courses in their communities that fit around childcare responsibilities and are easily accessible.
Inspiring Futures will work towards making positive life changes through direct mentoring, group work, basic skills courses, parenting and referrals such as benefit advice, counselling and health.
Through 1-2-1 support and guidance we will engage women in our communities, providing them with the desire to learn and the encouragement to achieve employment. A high percentage of the women that access our centres are a long way from employability programs due to a number of adverse experiences so we will address these complex challenges and find ways to overcome them. We will develop trusted, positive relationships and challenge the current levels of thinking and self-belief. We will support women intensively in order for them to overcome possible obstacles such as lack of confidence, mental health conditions, disabilities, benefit restrictions, poor skills and lack of experience.
It is this engagement and opportunity to up-skill, gain experience and qualifications that will uncover women’s own talents and gifts, inspiring them to see a better life for themselves and their families.
Invitations and support will be given to access Faith in Families other projects such as our Shaping Futures and Brighter Futures projects, our cookery courses, budget workshops and our family intervention services. It is here that friendships will be built, anxieties will be shared and women will be inspired to start the next stage of their very own learning journey.
Anyone wishing to take part need to just get in touch with one of the Centres by attending, a phone call or sending a message through social media. More information