We are delighted to announce the launch of our Working in Sustainable Employment, or WISE, Project.
WISE is a 12 month pilot scheme designed to support the people we work with to move into work, either with The Wallich or with our corporate partners across South Wales. The scheme, which has been developed in collaboration with our service users, will provide training, industry-standard qualifications and ‘on the job’ experience, with continued support through the probationary period for those moving into employment.
It is our goal to support our residents and service users in their move towards independence, by tackling their housing situation and working through any associated issues. As part of this support it is also our aim to provide training, volunteering opportunities, work placements and ultimately paid employment. We recognise the vital role that work can play in getting people out of the cycle of homelessness, for good.
Research demonstrates that some of the main barriers to employment for homeless or vulnerable housed people are; a lack of previous work history or work experience, a lack of confidence and a lack of opportunities. 67% of Wallich service users have had a job in the last 2 years, the majority want to work and just need the right tools and support to overcome these barriers.
The Wallich has tailored the WISE programme specifically to tackle these issues through training sessions, mentoring, practical support, and through strong links with corporate employers. We already have a successful relationship with the PS Group, a Cardiff call centre (read more about it here) and are looking to develop similar schemes with other employers.
As an organisation we also have a commitment to employing people internally who have experienced homelessness. Our goal of 10% has been exceeded and currently 17% of our staff have either been supported by us or have experienced homelessness and the related issues. See the ‘Our Stories’ section for examples of employees who have successfully made this transition.
The WISE project will help this organisational objective, but will also give people the tools to gain sustainable, meaningful employment in their communities, whatever their chosen career path.
We look forward to sharing more information about the project as it progresses.