Family comes first for John
10 Feb 2023
Having money is a basic necessity for everyone, and for John Carter that necessity is perhaps more apparent than most. With nine children to look after, being able to afford a home as well as plenty of food is a must. So when John, 30, lost his job and found himself homeless, there was a sense of urgency to find new work. Thanks to Ingeus’s JETS programme, his situation soon changed.
John, a former self-employed painter and decorator, was unable to work after a back injury. Gradually losing his clients, he was unable to pay his bills and eventually found himself homeless in May 2022. While his parents looked after eight of their children, John and his partner and one child spent almost 10 weeks sleeping in different hotels.
“I was really struggling with my mental health,” recalls John, whose partner is expecting their tenth child. “I’d never been out of work for so long, and when you’ve got this many kids you need money all of the time. You can’t get away with doing a monthly food shop, it needs to be weekly.”
After signing up for Universal Credit, John, from Blackpool, was referred by his local Jobcentre Plus to Job Entry Targeted Support (JETS), a separate strand of the Work and Health Programme (WHP). There, he was supported via remote appointments, which were more convenient for him, with Employment Coach Aaron Bowkett.
Aaron immediately helped John to be in a better position to apply for work should the right job arise, sourcing him a laptop and working with him to update his CV. Within a week of receiving Aaron’s help, John received two job offers – both on the same day.
He says, “Being offered two jobs on the same day gave me the boost that I needed – things were really tough at home and I was feeling invisible. The offers made me feel like I was being seen again.”
John decided to accept a role in a glass merchant factory, where the shift patterns and type of work suited his family’s and his injured back’s needs.
“It suits me down to the ground,” explains John. “I do evening shifts so my partner can go to work in the mornings, and that way we have childcare covered.
“Aaron has the patience of a saint, he is a real credit to Ingeus. He got me a bike, a laptop and a job – I can’t ask for more!”
Delivered in North West England by Ingeus, JETS is commissioned and financed by the Department for Work and Pensions