With the help of a grant from CCF, The Rossendale Trust WorkTaste Initiative recruits local businesses and community projects to host short workplace opportunities, supported 1:1 by trained Rossendale staff, helping people who might otherwise struggle to get a real taste of employment.
The scheme can also lead to some fantastic additional opportunities.
Emma Heard, a Worktaste participant with learning disabilities, was 6 weeks into her placement at The Clink Café in Manchester when she was given the opportunity to take a City and Guilds Food and Beverage qualification.
Then came a global pandemic …
Despite the closure of the Café, Emma was determined to press on with the course, and with the online support of Keely her WorkTaste coach and Esme her PA, Emma is well on the way to achieving her qualification. As Keely commented, “The warmth and support that the staff at The Clink have given to Emma has been exceptional. She has done phenomenally well to stay focussed and positive. She is an absolute joy to work with.”
As well as the academic elements to the course, Emma has also managed to continue with the practical sessions during lockdown, using video calls to showcase her baking talents.
As Emma herself has said, “Starting my course City and Guilds course has challenged me in different ways. I feel like I’m achieving something, which has helped me stay positive during lockdown. It’s been good to get out of my comfort zone and it has surprised me how much I can do!”