News

26Jan2022
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Deadline for employment programme helping Sunderland residents back into work closes in

The deadline for an employment programme that aims to get residents of Sunderland back into work is fast approaching. 

The Wise Steps programme, which is being delivered by our job coaches, provides free practical advice and support to people living in the city who are unemployed and looking for a job. 

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show that the North East has the highest rate of unemployment in the country.  

Almost 10,000 people in Sunderland are currently unemployed. As unemployment rises, so does the number of people looking for work. 

Last year, our dedicated job coaches supported more than 80 people through the Wise Steps programme. They specifically help with skills development, building confidence and vocational training. They can help you take the first steps back to work, or towards work if you have never worked before.  

Clive Lee, from Sunderland, was a participant on the Wise Steps programme. Clive said:  

“I can’t thank Gentoo enough for the expert advice and guidance they have given me.  

“It’s all very informal and they work with you on improving your confidence when it comes to interviews. I now feel confident enough to answer any question that could come my way. I would definitely recommend anyone who is looking for work to get in touch with the job coaches.” 

Kayle Hope, Job Coach at Gentoo Group, said: 

“We understand the importance of getting a job or learning new skills for the wellbeing of individuals. It helps with socialising, self-confidence and personal development. 

“Everyone I’ve worked with has been so willing to learn and better themselves. I love that I get to help people change their lives and be part of the first step into a new career path.” 

The Wise Steps programme is available for anyone aged 18 and over. You must be entitled to work in the UK and not in paid employment. The programme is open to all Tyne and Wear residents. You don’t have to be a Gentoo tenant to benefit. 

The programme has been helping people in Tyne and Wear transform their lives through work since 2017. It is funded by the National Lottery Community Fund and the European Social Fund.  

Applications to join the Wise Steps programme are open until Monday 31 January.  

For more information, or to apply, call us on 0191 525 2753 or email kayle.hope@gentoogroup.com 

Finding access to the right support can be confusing so we’ve centralised all of our services on our employability support and training page to help you navigate your way through.