Moving from volunteering towards career goal: Shakila’s story

“Joanne from Making a Difference built up my confidence and made me aware of job criteria and job environment.”

Shakila, age 45 from West Yorkshire, had held a number of voluntary positions in the past few years, including helping in schools. She was ready to start looking for paid work, so joined the Making a Difference programme and was introduced to her Employment Coach Jo.

In their first 1:2:1 session together, they discussed Shakila’s skills, experience and her career goal of teaching. They also discussed the main aspects of job hunting she felt that she would most benefit from support with.

Shakila and Jo decided that developing Shakila’s CV and building her confidence with applications would be their two main goals. Jo then planned her sessions with Shakila to focus on these two aims.

Tackling job applications

Their next session focused on writing effective application forms. Previously Shakila hadn’t understood the importance of the personal statement section and that this is the main section to write about your skills and experience. She left this session with Joanne feeling much more confident in how to write strong application forms.

CV writing

They then moved on to developing Shakila’s CV, ensuring it contained only relevant information which showcased her skills and experience. Jo emphasised the importance of including and highlighting Shakila’s volunteer positions alongside paid positions. They also used key words to demonstrate the transferable skills those positions had given her.

Jo then moved onto supporting Shakila to develop her interview technique and confidence in interview situations.

Moving towards career goals

As Shakila had considerable experience working as a volunteer teaching assistant, Jo supported her to register with a Teaching Assistant agency and she is now awaiting her first placement.

Shakila grew in confidence during her time on the Making a Difference programme and speaks highly of how helpful it was to prepare her to move from volunteering to paid work.  She has been recommending Making a Difference to others needing support to get into work as she wanted to give someone else the chance to benefit from the programme.

About the difference Making a Difference has had on her life, Shakila said:

“My ambition had always been to become a teacher, I loved kids and have experience how to manage them but didn’t have formal certification. I also didn’t have confidence in interviews and didn’t know how to make a CV. Joanne from Making a Difference built up my confidence and made me aware of job criteria and job environment.

The Making a Difference programme does make a difference. I would suggest anybody contacts this program. It actually is a life changer and truly makes a difference.”

If you, or someone you know, would like our help to move into work, contact us for a free appointment now.




Back to Our Stories