April 2021 – March 2022
Long term unemployment is distressing and debilitating. For Dale, 18 months without work led to mental health problems “I’d been out of work for far too long,” he explains “I’d reached the point where my anxiety was so bad, I didn’t even want to answer the phone.”
Dale was referred by his local Jobcentre Plus to Richard Pundick in the Greater Manchester Working Well (Work and Health Programme) team. The programme, delivered by Ingeus, provides tailored support to individuals with disabilities and health conditions who are seeking employment. However, Dale’s lack of a computer was proving a difficult barrier to overcome.
Dale recalls, “I was on Universal Credit and couldn’t afford a laptop, so I was using my phone for everything. It was hard because I kept getting distracted with notifications coming through”.
This is where PCrefurb stepped in. Since June 2021 PCrefurb has been working in partnership with Ingeus to support participants on their Work and Health Programme through the provision of PCs and laptops. From June 2021 to March 2022, PCrefurb received 46 referrals from Ingeus.
Dale received a refurbished Dell laptop in November 2021 and two months into his new job in a local bar Dale is grateful for the support he received. He says, “Thank you to PCrefurb for the computer as it helped when my finances were too low to even consider buying one”.
Carole had been out of the world of employment for quite a few years while caring for her mother. She realised that getting back into secretarial and administrative work would be very difficult without upgrading her IT skills but her old computer was unable to cope with Microsoft software upgrades. She said, “I felt stuck at the first hurdle”.
Sarah Kelly at the High Peak Careers Service contacted PCrefurb to arrange the loan of a device so that Carole could access some online training. Carole recalls “I was very impressed at just how quickly PCrefurb contacted me with the offer of a desktop pc which I would be able to collect within a couple of weeks. I was on my way with updating my knowledge and skills”.
Carole told us, “After picking up the learning reins again and getting back on track I now feel much more confident in contacting prospective employers and have even felt competent enough to extend my knowledge into different areas. A new job hasn’t happened just yet but, in the meantime, I am putting my skills to good use in the voluntary sector. Thank you again to the staff at PCrefurb; you have been instrumental in helping me get to grips with my life again!”.
Ron was referred to our Digital Wellbeing Project by Nicola Lowe of Tameside Dementia Support Service. She explained that Ron had a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s and a tablet could help to reduce his social isolation and promote independence.
Ron was lent a tablet and received support from Angela, a Digital Champion. Ron’s wife, Anne, told us “Ron has never used any technology before, a phone was bad enough for him. He adapted really well I was so pleased. The lady who came to sit with him was amazing so kind and patient and asking Ron all the time what he would like, it was wonderful to watch.”
Ron went on to use the tablet to engage with family members as Anne explains “It enabled our grandchildren to say “get the tablet out grandad “and they would play games and do jigsaws that were downloaded for him it made him smile and want to do something with them. It boosted his confidence in that he could try new things.
A very tearful, but wonderful moment. Cannot recommend this highly enough and is such a positive thing for people in the community. So glad we were referred.”
Joanne discovered PCrefurb via G52, a Gamesley based Community Group.
She explained “after spending 19 years disabled and on benefits, I decided to get myself back to good health and back to work. I wanted to open my own business and become self-employed, but with very little computer skills and no income for a laptop or training G52 pointed me in the direction of PCrefurb.”
We decided that Joanne would benefit from the use of a laptop and the support of one of our Digital Champions. Joanne was full of praise for the help she received. “What a blessing this service has been for me and I’m truly grateful for all the support you have given me. One of the greatest things about my experience is getting to meet Jules who helped me gain the confidence to use the laptop. Before meeting Jules, I could only send basic emails but after Jules’ support I now write courses, do spread sheets for my taxes, open files and share documents. I can honestly say without the support of these two charities, I wouldn’t be doing the things I am today.”