Further funding for Winchester’s job-seekers

Press Release: 10/08/2016

Employment Mentoring Programme

The Charity of Henry Smith (St John the Baptist branch) has made a generous contribution towards Winchester City Council’s popular and successful employment mentoring programme.

Winchester City Council is working with the national charity Sova to provide the service, which trains locally recruited mentors to provide emotional and practical support for unemployed residents of the district.

So far 21 volunteer mentors have been recruited in four phases of recruitment. These volunteers have given over 420 hours of support to 41 people seeking employment opportunities. Ninety per cent of those participating in the programme have seen improvements to their job-search skills.

On Sunday 7 August Paul Kennedy, Rector of East Winchester and
Area Dean of the Winchester Deanery, presented a cheque for £5,000 to Winchester City Council and Sova in front of the combined congregations of All Saints and St John the Baptist churches.

Cllr Steve Miller, Winchester City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Estates and Local Economy, said:

We are delighted to accept this financial contribution from The Charity of Henry Smith (St John the Baptist branch) which shows that our popular employment mentoring programme is highly regarded locally. Winchester City Council will also be continuing its financial support for a further year, and we will be looking for further external grants to sustain this much-valued service beyond that time. These financial contributions will allow the service to grow from strength to strength.

John Harding, Chairman of the Employment Mentoring Steering Group and congregation member of St John the Baptist Church, added:

As Chairman of the steering group for two years I am proud of the success of the programme. We will use the financial support from The Charity of Henry Smith (St John the Baptist branch) for additional IT training for job-seekers. This will enable our programme participants to enhance their IT skills as well as benefiting local employers.

If you would like help with finding work and you live within the Winchester district or are interested in volunteering on the programme please contact Alex Solomon at asolomon@winchester.gov.uk or on 07980 732 005.

For further information about the employment mentoring service visit www.winchester.gov.uk/employmentmentoring or www.sova.org.uk/project/WDEM