AN UNEMPLOYED and homeless Newcastle couple have turned their lives around and found jobs they love and a new place to live, thanks to support from employment specialists Working Links.
Louise Doyle and Andrew Byrne, both 23, had been illegally evicted from their home and were living in a caravan when they came to Working Links, one of the leading welfare-to-work providers in the country.
Tutor Alan Turnbull helped them contact Cheviot Housing Association whilst they both attended Working Links’ 13-week internal course which helps people look for and prepare for work.
Within a few weeks they had a new home and Louise had a new job as a deputy manager at Playdays in Wallsend, as a result of a placement organised by Working Links.
The programme had also given Andrew the confidence to apply for a job in catering, an area he’d always been interested in, and now he’s working as an assistant cook in a Four Seasons care home.
In just a few months the couple have gone from being penniless and homeless to having a healthy regular income and a home they’re happy with.
“I had become very depressed living in the caravan,” said Louise. “I’d had to give up my shop job because I was getting harassed by customers and everything was going wrong all at the same time.
“I’m absolutely ecstatic now with the way my life is going, I’m really happy with my new flat and the roof certainly doesn’t shake like it did in the caravan.
“I love my job. I have childcare qualifications and I always wanted to work with children so this is a great opportunity and the programme gave Andrew support to find a catering job which is what he’s always wanted to do.
“The help that we’ve had from Working Links has been fantastic. None of this would have happened without their support. I am really looking forward to the future now.”
Working Links offers programmes to help people look for a job, prepare for interviews and give them the confidence and motivation to set goals. For more information about Working Links call freephone 08009 179 262 or visit www.workinglinks.co.uk.