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IT Course Works Out for Patrick

Forty-eight-year-old Patrick Sheehy from Middlesbrough is a prime example of how Actes’ IT and employability course Work IT Out is helping people to improve their confidence and be better prepared to navigate Universal Credit.

Patrick had engaged with the Jobcentre for many years and had struggled to attend the various courses he’d been referred on to due to confidence issues and an inbuilt fear of IT.  However, after completing Work IT Out, Patrick has not only displayed improved confidence in using a computer, but a more positive and enthusiastic attitude towards learning.

Work IT Out is delivered by Actes in partnership with Hartlepool College of Further Education.  The course runs for eight days over a two weeks period (Tuesday to Friday) and carries two qualifications, Entry Level 3 IT and NOCN Level 1 Employability.  It is aimed at people aged 19 plus from Middlesbrough and Stockton and course elements include navigating a computer, how to apply for and how to use Universal Credit, communication and interpersonal skills, creating a CV and cover letter, budgeting and interview preparation.  Since April, Work IT Out has helped 36 people into jobs, training and volunteering opportunities.

Patrick was referred to Work IT Out by his Work Coach at Thorntree Job Centre. He says that the one-to-one support he received through the course was really beneficial.  Patrick commented: “I really enjoyed Work IT Out. The smaller group meant I wasn’t afraid to ask questions and my tutor Bernie was really supportive; I got lots of help and learnt how to log in to Find a Job, how to upload a CV, how to search for jobs and lots more.  I’d like to keep going after the course and would like to find a job as a volunteer.”

After completing the course, Actes’ Work IT Out tutor Bernie Spark has continued to offer one-to-one support to Patrick to go over the course content.  She is also investigating other opportunities for Patrick to keep him on a positive pathway, including other support opportunities and potential volunteering roles. She said: “Patrick has come a long way since starting Work IT Out. He was extremely apprehensive at the start which was largely down to confidence issues, but with one-to-one support he’s shown huge progress. I’m pleased to have been able to help him to overcome some of his confidence issues and to help him to complete the course and learn new things that will benefit him day-to-day.”

Alex Binns, Work Coach at Thorntree Job Centre has seen a marked change in Patrick’s attitude since completing Work It Out. He said: “Patrick’s attitude and approach to learning has changed dramatically since completing Work IT Out.  Previously he has been reluctant to engage on courses due to issues with self-confidence and engaging with people in a group setting. He didn’t believe he could do what was required which was a barrier from the outset. The approach taken by the Work IT Out tutors and the one-to-one support have really helped Patrick and his general outlook is a lot more positive. The completion of Work IT Out is a significant personal success and this achievement has come at just the right time with the roll out of Universal Credit.”

For more information about Work IT Out training course or to make a referral please contact 01642 255001 or email: