Life Leisure launches scheme to support Stockport’s job seekers at the Avondale Centre
By Claire Evans on Feb 16, 2017
Job seekers in Stockport are set to benefit from a new scheme which aims to help those struggling to find work to boost their employment prospects and better access exercise.
Working in partnership with a number of local services and organisations, Life Leisure has launched a weekly drop-in session at its Avondale centre, at which visitors can access advice and support – on areas such as CV writing, online job searching and interview techniques – IT facilities, and also use the on-site pool and gym.
Run by Life Leisure volunteers, the new ‘Job Club’ takes place every Friday between 10am and 12 noon.
Pictured from L-R: Seb Rowe (Life Leisure), David Turner (Job Club participant), Rhonda McPhail (Life Leisure), Gary Wells (Home Instead), Adelle Izzard (Life Leisure), Katie Harrop (Life Leisure), Caroline Hunt (Life Leisure).
Among the organisations pledging their support for the initiative is Smart Works Manchester, a charity which helps dress and train women for interviews. The charity has already offered to supply outfits for female Job Club participants who secure interviews through the scheme.
Stockport Councillor Sheila Bailey has also expressed her enthusiasm and backing for the scheme, commenting: “This initiative is a fantastic opportunity for people to access help and support while looking for employment. Not only does the Job Club offer opportunities to improve job hunting but also to get fit at the same time. Congratulations to Life Leisure for setting this up – another boost for Avondale as a real community asset”.
Stockport Homes has agreed to help promote Job Club sessions to local residents who may benefit from the initiative. Local organisations looking to recruit will also be attending sessions to highlight opportunities. Elderly home care specialist Home Instead Senior Care Stockport, which is actively recruiting caregiver roles, has already attended a session and supports the initiative.
Life Leisure CEO, Malcolm McPhail, said: “There should never be any stigma attached to job seeking but sadly, those who feel it most are often the individual’s actively searching employment. With the Avondale Job Club, we wanted to present an alternative avenue that might just help people feel more at ease, less embarrassed and also help promote wellbeing.
“I’m a firm believer that physical activity offers benefits that permeate many different aspects of life – it can help lift mood, build self-esteem and improve mental wellbeing. By pairing practical and emotional support with access to physical activity, our hope is that those using the Job Club will experience these benefits while also boosting their job prospects.”
The project is a precursor to further collaborative schemes likely in 2017, thanks to a new alliance of third sector organisations operating in and around Stockport.
Malcolm continued: “Projects like this show what a difference it makes when just a few organisations come together. Imagine what could be done if a larger alliance of third sector organisations collaborated to work towards shared goals? That’s the principle behind a new project we are working on in partnership with other charities in the area – an alliance we aim to launch later this spring.”