Nathan Daniels began training as a joiner when he left school and was working towards a level 3 qualification when his employer said they couldn’t keep him on.
He then found himself in and out of various insecure and uninspiring jobs, until believe housing stepped in.
The County Durham-based housing association provides employability support for anyone living in one of its homes or waiting to become a tenant.
Joanne Brown, Employability Coordinator, explains: “I was able to get Nathan some practical support and keep him motivated when he needed it.
“The best part of my job is seeing someone like Nathan move forward, and in his case different parts of believe housing were able to come together to get him into the role he was after.”
While Joanne was working with Nathan, believe housing’s Procurement and Assets Teams were talking to Sendrig Construction about a contract to make internal improvements, such as rewires, new kitchens or bathrooms, to more than 100 homes.
As part of Sendrig’s social value commitment it planned to offer a paid work placement to a believe housing resident. But, because Nathan already had experience and a level 2 qualification, the company offered him a job and training instead.
Joanne said: “Joint appointments with Nathan kept him motivated and, together, we got him financial help to pay for tools, asbestos training, a safety certificate, and two weeks’ travel costs before he received his first pay.
“That meant he was able to take the job and move into sustainable employment.”
The 22-year-old, from Peterlee, says: “The support I’ve had has been great, Joanne has been there whenever I’ve had a problem.
“Just before my first interview I broke my foot playing football and thought that was the end of it, but she kept in touch with me and Sendrig so the opportunity was still there for me.
“She came with me to my interview, helped me get what I needed so I could do the job and, more than that, she’s helped with my mental health by always being there to offer support.
“I’m really grateful and loving the job.”
Sendrig’s Senior Commercial Manager, Gary Dillon, said: “Sendrig was over the moon to help place Nathan on site. As part of our site team, we can help him continue his journey in construction.
“Our social value commitment is a priority for the business going forward. By engaging with local communities, we can help improve as many areas as possible.”
David Taylor, Assistant Director of Major Works at believe housing, said: “Bringing Sendrig and Nathan together was win-win, as our contractor was able to recruit an enthusiastic new team member and a tenant’s son got the job he was after.”