Lucy Hillier, Cam Newman and James Taylor have recently completed youth charity UKSA’s Back to Work programme Aweigh Ahead, which was funded by the Department of Work and Pensions.
The young people took part in the six-week part-residential course after their JobCentre work coaches recommended the programme. The highly successful course combines on-water experiences with work experience in the local community. Importantly, participants find the healthy routine and positive environment of UKSA raises their aspirations, motivates them and gives them qualifications to enable them to seek work. They are all offered one-to-one mentoring and support, and careers guidance as part of the programme.
After two years training to become a motor mechanic so she could enter the family business, 20-year-old Lucy Hillier of Rookley plans came to a sudden halt when she found out she was allergic to motor oil.
“I had never been to UKSA before and has never done any sailing of watersports. When I got here I thought it was an amazing place. Although I have always loved the sea I never thought I would ever be somewhere like this. I’ve done kayaking, keelboating, and got my Level 1 powerboat qualification, and I have been working on my CV.
“I did work experience here at UKSA helping the instructors on the coach boats and doing ropework and steering on the yachts. Now I want to work here, helping kids who may have a lack of confidence in the same way as my instructor Oliver Clare has helped me.”
Cam Newman, 18, of Ventnor, was recommended the UKSA Aweigh Ahead course by JobCentre Plus when he mentioned seeing an advert in the local paper about their watersports courses.
“My confidence has grown dramatically, I absolutely loved my work experience with Goddards Brewery and can’t thank them enough for the opportunity.”
James Taylor, 23 of Sandown, was also recommended the scheme though his advisor at the JobCentre Plus.
“Before I came to UKSA I was apprehensive, I hadn’t done any watersports before, but this was really fun and this has given me the determination, confidence and better communications skills to move forward.”
Moving forward, Lucy is applying to work as a seasonal activity instructor at UKSA whilst Cam and James are confidentially looking for available work on the Island.
Interested young people can ask at their JobCentre or contact Lee Jones at UKSA on 294941.
Photographed L-R: James Taylor, Cam Newman, Lucy Hillier and UKSA Instructor Oliver Clare