A Tower Hamlets Council scheme aimed at helping all of its residents into employment has been launched within sight of Canary Wharf. The Workpath service, run by the authority in association with 600 organisations, will offer support, training and coaching to those living in the borough and looking for work.

The council said the programme aimed to reach 10,000 residents over the next three years and help 4,500 into work.

Its ultimate ambition is to give every person living in the borough the necessary skills and support to find a job and was unveiled on Thursday, April 6,

During the service’s official launch at the Museum Of London Docklands on West India Quay cabinet member for work and economic growth cllr Joshua Peck said the scheme would replace the council’s Skillsmatch service.

He said: “The most important, the most transformative thing we can do as a council is to support our residents into work.

“Our mission has to be to fuse the huge economic opportunity right here at the beating heart of the UK economy with the opportunity and wellbeing of our residents.

“We want to make sure any resident who wants to work gets the support they need.”

Workpath brand ambassador Mandy Clapp

Mandy Clapp left school with no qualifications when she was 16, but decided she wanted to become a role model for her daughters after the birth of her third child when she was 30.

Mandy said Skillsmatch had helped her become a carer, even though she was so scared of the challenge of enrolling on her course that she was tempted to run away.

Mandy is now finishing her training in a sexual health clinic where she said her surname had brought a lot of amuseument.

She said thanks to the scheme she had been able to afford lessons to help her pass her driving test and a family holiday next year.

She said: “I’m so glad I didn’t run away. It was the best decision I have ever made in my life.”

Attendees gather for the Workpath launch at the Museum Of London Docklands on West India Quay

Joshua Sabaroche, 25, was helped by Skillsmatch after he lost his job, and said he would “100% recommend” people got involved with Workpath.

Joshua, who lives in Moody Street, Stepney, was a fitness instructor at LA Fitness on West India Quay.

However, after breaking his leg while on holiday around four years ago, he was unable to work for a period of time and was eventually made redundant.

His Skillsmatch advisor suggested he looked into construction, and Joshua rose through the ranks to become an engineer for Crossrail, which is now sponsoring him through a civil engineering degree at London South Bank University.

He said: “I wouldn’t be where I am today without this. They gave me opportunities I hadn’t thought I would be able to step up to before.”

For more information about Workpath, call 020 7364 0626, email workpath@towerhamlets.gov.uk.

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