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Shaun’s story: from losing his job to becoming a fully qualified HGV driver

Pluss Positive People Positive People - Somerset Self employment 08 November 2021

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, Shaun was self-employed in the Taunton area of Somerset. He was setting up a new company making things with reclaimed wood. When the UK entered lockdown it was clear that Shaun’s plans were no longer viable and he needed to adapt to survive.

Shaun commented: “I’ve always been self-employed and can turn my hand to most things, but when the pandemic hit and the restrictions came in, I lost all my work. I was struggling financially and was unable to fund any retraining. I’m a qualified plumber and drainage engineer but the restrictions hindered securing any self-employed work opportunities.”

Shaun was referred to Abri, a Positive People partner in Somerset. He needed to complete his Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) and renew his HGV licence to enable him to secure reliable employment. He desperately needed support with the funding.

This presented a number of challenges. For someone seeking support, it can be quite daunting knowing what sort of help is available and how to access it.

“The Job Centre initially sent me to the JETS programme (another employability funded programme) then I was referred to the Positive People programme who I was told would be able to fund the CPC. Securing funding for training to retrain leading to a more secure job was the biggest challenge” commented Shaun.

“Positive People were able to provide the funding and liaised with the training provider. They also provided regular support along the way to keep me on track,” said Shaun.

Thanks to Shaun’s efforts and determination, he is now working for an agency driving Class 1 and 2 vehicles.

“Working for an agency suits me because I can now manage my own working week, with time for planning my own business. This was my ambition at the start of the pandemic and the driving will allow me to fund my own business and plan for the future,” concluded Shaun.

If you know someone who is not in work and is interested in commercial driving like Shaun, contact us today 0800 334 5525 for a friendly, confidential chat.