UNEMPLOYED residents in the city are being urged to turn to the council to help secure work.
Portsmouth City Council’s Work and Health and Well at Work programmes aim to support people who might struggle to find employment due to physical impairments or disabilities.
The council’s work was championed by Portsmouth resident Grant Hardy who was able to find work through the council after 10 years in unemployment.
Grant, who has mobility issues, took part in the Work Choice programme, run by PCMI Signs, and landed a job as a member of the administration team in the council’s regeneration department.
He said: ‘I never expected to get this far.
‘It felt amazing to know that people had confidence in me and that they believed I could get to where I needed to be.
‘If you’d told me two years ago, when I started on the course, that I’d be here today then I never would have believed you.’
Stephen Hogan, one of the council’s PCMI employment and skills specialists, said: ‘Grant is a very nice bloke but more importantly he’s done everything asked of him to develop the skills he’s needed to get into full time work.
‘He’s been really put through his paces because he had to learn very quickly, which he did, and that is all credit to him.’
For Jon Mullar, trustee of the disability charity Enable Activity, the employment schemes were welcome.
‘This is fantastic news for Grant and will greatly encourage people with disabilities to fulfil their dreams to find employment,’ he said.
‘Enable Ability is planning a social enterprise to support people along a similar path to reach these much desired goals.’
Although the Work Choice scheme closed last year other programmes are still running.
The Work and Health programme team helps people identify their strengths and prepares them for work. Referrals are made via the Job Centre.
Whereas the Well at Work programme provides support to stay in work. People can self-refer or come through pain management clinics, physiotherapy or their GPs.
To find out more call 023 9232 2800 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.