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Wandle Young Inspectors Case Study - Francesca Stone

Being a part of this project has given Francesca the confidence she lacked and empowered her to be pro-active and focused.

Background

Francesca, 24, is a Wandle Young Inspector. She lives in Wandsworth with her mother. Currently, she is looking for employment. Francesca studied Business Studies at South Thames College, but decided it was not the right path for her.

Having an interest in gaming she jumped into studying Games Culture at London South Bank University. Francesca has a passion to become a teacher one day, but after her degree she  didn’t know what career she wanted to pursue.

Before the programme Francesca suffered from severe anxiety, agoraphobia and depression.

She has just been selected as one of the final candidates for a post as an office administrator for the NHS.

“Since the age of 16 I have suffered from depression. The medication I was on pumped up my anxiety, to the point where I was scared to go outside and leave the house. I was suffering from quite bad agoraphobia. When applying for the post I hadn’t left the house for 2 and a half weeks. One of the biggest barriers for me was plucking up the courage to attend the training weekend.”

Expectations

Francesca heard about the Young Inspectors through the leaflet she received in the mail. She had no expectations of the project and at first was reluctant to apply.

“Application seemed daunting. It asked if we had experience of doing community work, which I don’t. I thought I lacked the experience and skills to be successful.”

With the support of her mother and boyfriend, Francesca applied for the post. At the time of applying she was suffering from agoraphobia.

Francesca wanted to take part to meet new people and be involved in her community.

Positive Outcomes

Being a part of this project has given Francesca the confidence she lacked and empowered her to be pro-active and focused. Since joining the programme she has:

  • Completed two online Foundation Diploma Qualifications: Social Media Marketing and Microsoft Excel
  • Re-worked her CV and been searching for jobs online
  • Applied for a post with the NHS to be an office administrator at one of the local hospitals
  • Sailed through an IT test and Double Reasoning test for the NHS position
  • Is 1 of 3 out of 100 applicants to be successful in reaching the final stages of the NHS job application process
  • Francesca will receive a permanent post as soon as one becomes available.

“It is absolutely because of this programme that I got the post. I gained so much confidence and learnt new skills. Before this I totally lost the opportunity for a job because I was too anxious and nervous to make it through the interview”

Lowlights and Highlights

Francesca said she had no low lights from the programme.

Her highlights included:

  • Building up her confidence
  • Having a new experience
  • Meeting new people
  • The routine of having weekly meetings and responsibilities – “I needed this at the time with my anxiety”

What’s Next?

Francesca has just signed up to be a Digital Champion for Wandle’s Community investment project.

In 5 years Francesca sees herself:

  • Embracing new opportunities
  • Teaching IT – teaching is something she is very passionate about
  • Maybe staying in the NHS if she enjoys it
  • Applying for other jobs as she feels she has the confidence to do that now!

“These projects have a BIG impact on us as young people and give us lots of opportunities. They give young people confidence and the motivation to go out there and make something of themselves!”