Careers & Employment - Tackling Unemployment in London, Case Study 1
Stuart from Hounslow was supported by Go4it, a programme which assists teen parents and care leavers aged 16–19 who are not education, employment and training, to find his dream job working at the Heathrow airport Animal Quarantine centre.
Go4it began supporting Stuart after he attended one of their interview skills session at the Hounslow Leaving Care group. Stuart had previously completed Level 2 studies in Animal Care and had started Level 3 but was unable to complete it because he had to move. Stuart had previous work experience with animals, having helped at a pet shop and kennels, but was finding it difficult to find work or apprenticeships. Go4it found a work experience placement for Stuart at Heathrow airport Animal Quarantine centre. His adviser went with him to meet the team at the centre. After a successful placement which impressed the quarantine centre he was offered a role and has taken it.
Stuart says: “I have always had a strong passion for animals which is why I previously completed relevant experience. However despite this I was finding it hard to find work. Go4it has made such a difference to me. They found the placement at Heathrow for me and then supported me through it including paying for my rabies vaccination without which I could not have done the work experience.
"The work experience was great. My duties included everything;cleaning kennels and other animal cages, taking dogs out for exercise, collecting animals who had just arrived in the country and placing them in relevant quarantine, returning animals to their owners and cleaning animals. I was doing such a range of duties that every day was different!
"I got to handle lots of exotic animals too, including a snapping turtle, a monitor lizard, a kaiman crocodile and a variety of exotic birds. I’ve enjoyed this work experience so much. My plans for the future are to stay in this area of work.”