‘Because I’ve been out of work I know what it is like.’
In Nigeria, Christina was a teacher. Upon returning to London, her birthplace, she found that having young children made working difficult. This experience prepared her well for working with us, initially as a volunteer and now as manager of our Information, Advice and Guidance projects.
‘When I talked to my clients, it was drawn from my own experience,’ she explains. ‘I would call them in the evenings or they could text my phone and I’d have a chat with them.’
It’s this belief in clients’ potential – expressed through a warm and supportive approach – which helped Daisy to realise her own potential.
‘Daisy came to us,’ recalls Christina, ‘with a CV that wouldn’t have got her a job. She sat down with me and I gave her my lunch, she needed it more than I did. We worked on her CV and application form. She wanted to work and went for an interview, but she didn’t get it and was downhearted. But she said, “Christina, I am going to go and study.” And she did.’
We supported Daisy as she began a course in Human Resources and Law at Southbank University and, says Christina, ‘has graduated and has a fantastic job. She is now doing her Masters and she came back to say thank you.’
For us, this refusal to give up believing is at the heart of success stories like Daisy’s.
‘Daisy had no experience at the start, but we provided childcare for her in the school holidays so she could get work experience,’ explains Christina. ‘Although we hit most of our targets at Pecan,’ she adds, ‘the most important thing is that we always go the extra mile.’