In this section, FST workforce members speak about their experience of FST and what impact it has had on their lives …
I’d just finished a fashion course and saw FST’s Driving Ambition leaflet. I was like, wow, free driving lessons and theory test? Cars are always going to be with us and driving is a skill for life. There’s also jobs that require a licence. If another woman was thinking of a work placement as a mechanic I’d say go for it. More.
I was doing a motor mechanics course when my key worker told me about SMaRT Garage Services. It’s hard to get a work placement so it was good to find out about this garage. I find the combination of college and working here good. More.
I became ill when I was in sixth form. I was in hospital for eight months then I came out and went to college but it happened again. I hadn’t worked for eight years. My care coordinator told me about FST because I needed to do something. I came down for an interview and got a place. More.
You get a lot of responsibility. I feel trusted – that’s a new feeling, especially when you’ve been in prison, hospital, on drugs. When you’re on drugs people think you might be lying. I lived six years with that mistrust, no responsibility. More.
A job agency suggested a work placement at FST. The first day was hectic. I was given the role of barrista and had to learn how to do the coffees. It took me a bit of time getting the milk froth just right for the lattes and cappuccinos. I like the responsibility of dealing with customers – it’s a challenge. More.
Before I found FST it was really difficult to get a meaningful work placement. Other organisations wouldn’t let you near anything important, didn’t give you responsibility or opportunity to progress. More.
The turning point was asking for help. I went into a treatment centre for seven months. I came out and they suggested I find something to do. I was referred to FST and that’s where it started. If I hadn’t gone down this path I’m not sure where I’d be. It was the kick start I needed. More.