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BBC Radio Shropshire Interview


I’m thrilled to inform you all that yours truly will be on BBC Radio Shropshire Next Thursday (13th April) at 11:30am!! 📻

Following on from my previous two interviews on BBC Radio Shropshire in July and August 2020 respectively, I will be updating BBC Radio Shropshire presenter; Mark Elliot on how I successfully obtained my role as a Team Assistant at the Telford Autism Hub, one of many services based within the Telford and Wrekin CVS.

When I had my initial interview with BBC Radio Shropshire in July 2020, my prospects seemed very bleak and uncertain as I was unemployed, with no aspirations, a lack of self confidence and low self esteem. At this point, my life felt so uncertain, having to process the negative outcome of each position that I had applied for, being informed that I “did not meet the criteria”, or “did not have any experience” for the role(s) that I had applied for. Things became increasingly more strenuous for me, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, as life as we knew it, would never be the same again. For me, living through the pandemic had a huge detrimental strain on my mental health and well-being, as I was unable to seek any employment opportunities that were relevant to my skill set, experience and knowledge, which affected my relationships with others in my life, and looking back now, I recognise I was not alone, and that life was always destined to get better, as they time can be a healer.

BBC Radio Shropshire held an employment support segment on their evening show in July 2020, and from reaching out to them, the Manager of the Job Centre Plus signposted me to their service, with a representative getting in touch to refer me to a service which would be able to support my specific needs. The outcome of this was that I was signed onto a Work and Health Programme with the Shaw Trust for 15 months. Initially at the induction stage of the process, I was really satisfied, and this resulted in a follow up Interview one month later after my initial chat with the radio station to inform them of the support that I was starting to receive.

Shaw Trust were contracted to support me for a maximum of 15 months, and during that time, I was slowly, but gradually starting to gain the confidence within myself to apply for work again, as the COVID restrictions began to ease. Looking back now, the support for my mental health was much appreciated, but the focus did not seem to be on supporting me seeking employment opportunities, thus resulted in me being in the same position I was in before I had my initial radio interview.

Just over a month after my support from Shaw Trust had concluded, I applied for the post of Team Assistant at the Telford Autism Hub, a service which supports the local autistic community within Telford and Wrekin. The main aim is to enable individuals to better understand their autistic identity, whether this be through an individual seeking an ASD Assessment or accessing additional support. When I cast my mind back to when I attended my Interview for the role in November 2021, I was feeling so overwhelmed, as this was the first face to face Interview I had attended prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. For anyone, the prospect of an Interview is very nerve wracking and gruelling, but I felt like my Interview was a whirlwind, I hadn’t felt like myself for a long time in years, and when I left, I was really proud of myself, regardless of the outcome.

When I received the news that I had been successful with the position of Team Assistant - that moment changed my life forever!! 💜

Now a year on, I’ve grown so much of a person, with career progression at the Hub as my contracted hours have increased from 12-15 hours to 24 hours per week, taking a lead on overseeing the administrative duties and social aspect of the role. As an neurodivergent person, it’s not always easy to adjust change, especially in terms of routine, however I have really embraced this change, and have found many benefits from working these hours, including more time to dedicate myself to the responsibilities in my role, a sleeping regime that allows me to take care of my health and well-being, and having a social environment to integrate with my second family at T&WCVS 🥰

TUNE IN 🎚️ Mark your calendars 📆 keep your ears open for me 📻 and wish me luck 🤞🏼

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