Case Studies

Our success stories

Success and Progression

There’s a reason why we’re rated as a ‘Grade 1’ Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ provider of education and skills –  we put care into developing careers – our learners, and their personal outcomes as individuals or as part of an organisation are at the heart of everything we do.

Read some of their stories below.
male sat with laptop in library

Jack: “I now have aspirations for the future.”

Jack is a participant on the Connecting Choices programme who moved into the YMCA and wanted to move closer to getting a job in the future. With the help of YMCA North Staffordshire Jack has improved his confidence, learnt new skills, and has now returned to education.
Woman managing finances

Treena: I feel positive about the future

Treena is a participant on the Connecting Choices programme who wanted support with her financial situation. With the help of Ixion Treena now feels in control of her finances and now feels more confident.
Woman receiving Spa therapy

Shelley: I have got my sparkle back

Shelley is a Connecting Choices participant who was experiencing low confidence and poor mental wellbeing. With the help from City of Stoke-on-Trent Council Shelley now feels more confident and has now entered employment.
Man smiling looking at camera

Lewis: I now have a better idea of how to apply for work

Lewis was finding it difficult applying for work due to receiving no responses from job applications. With the help of the Connecting Choices programme and YMCA North Staffordshire Lewis has managed to overcome his barriers and enter full time work.
Woman holding cat in animal shelter

Jess: I am more confident now

Jess was lacking confidence and struggled with time management. With the help of the Connecting Choices programme and partner charity Genius Within Jess now feels ready to return to employment.
Man with laptop sat on sofa smiling

Steven: A steady improvement of my skills

Steven wanted to improve his digital skills and had low confidence. With the help of the Connecting Choices programme Steven had a dedicated digital inclusion tutor to support him to gain the confidence to use technology.
Woman volunteer smiling packing boxes

Stacey: I feel like I could go to work now

Stacey was struggling with her self confidence and could not even do day to day tasks because of being socially isolated. With the support of the Connecting Choices programme and partner charity Genius Within Stacey now feels more confident and positive.
Male nurse pushing wheel chair

Ryan: I feel that the Connecting Choices programme has had a real impact on my life

Ryan is a participant on the Connecting Choices programme who had not been in employment for four years and suffered from low confidence after being made redundant. With the help of the Connecting Choices programme and partner charity 'Achieve Training' Ryan has successfully secured a new career and overcome his barriers of low confidence.
Picture of Niamh

Niamh – Apprenticeship in Digital Marketing

Niamh McCafferty is working towards her apprenticeship in Digital Marketing, so we caught up with her to ask about her learner journey, what she has gained from her role personally and professionally - and find out why she chose a cheetah to represent her learning experience!
Woman sitting near lake meditating whilst sun is setting

Kylie: An encouraging stepping stone to make life better

Kylie is a participant on the Connecting Choices programme who faced mental health issues and has a fear of men which resulted in low self-esteem and confidence. The Connecting Choices programme has given Kylie the confidence to seek work and progress into a volunteer role.
Man driving forklift truck in warehouse

Joshua: An ex-offender changing his life through lockdown

Just released from prison and with no qualifications, Joshua was finding it difficult to move into employment. Since joining the Connecting Choices programme Joshua has been supported by partner charity Change, Grow, Live where he is on track gaining qualifications and getting ready to start his new career.
Man with fist in the air whilst watching sunrise

Jason: From struggling with anxiety and low skills to a job he loves

Jason faced barriers of homelessness and struggled with his anxiety, confidence and low skills. He found the Connecting Choices programme, where Sonia from partner YMCA saw his potential, identified transferable skills, and boosted his self-belief – now Simon is happy and in a job he loves!
Male in a shirt taking selfie in a mirror

Steven – Apprenticeship in Digital Marketing

Steven Henderson has just completed his Apprenticeship in Digital Marketing, we caught up with him to ask him about his learner journey, what he has gained from his role personally and professionally – and find out why he chose a wolf to represent his learning experience!
Back of a woman with thumbs up looking at the Sun

Joanna: Anxiety and depression meant my life was on hold

Joanna's life was on hold until she joined the Connecting Choices programme in Stoke-on-Trent, where with support from partner charity YMCA she has built up her confidence, is no longer socially isolated and is actively applying for jobs.
Man walking alone

Darren: From multiple setbacks to feeling hopeful for the future

Darren had not long come out of prison, and facing setbacks was unable to find work impacting his mental health and wellbeing. Darren joined the Connecting Choices programme and is now volunteering and feels more hopeful, motivated, and determined to find employment.
Black and white photo of a young woman wearing glasses smiling

Lillie – Apprenticeship in Business Administration

Lillie Tempest-Routledge recently completed her Level 3 Apprenticeship in Business Administration, so we caught up with her to ask her about her learner journey and her plans for the future - plus, find out what her best experience was and why she chose a giraffe to represent her learner journey!
Man staring through window looking out with hand on glass

Simon: from social isolation and depression to a new-found confidence

Simon was on a downward spiral from poor lifestyle choices, facing homelessness and had become withdrawn and depressed. Through attendance of a local Social Hub he was introduced to the Connecting Choices programme and started working with his work coach Alex - and he now values his life, has a newfound confidence and is looking forward to his future!
A young lady with blonde hair smiling while stood in front of some plants and rocks

Ruby – Distinction Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care

Following her recent Distinction for her apprenticeship in health and social care, we caught up with Ruby Henly to ask her about her learner journey, what she found the most challenging and how she has been able to apply the skills she's learnt in her role as a mental health support worker.
clapping hands

Payal – Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care

Payal Patel is a domiciliary care worker and has just completed her Level 2 apprenticeship in health and social care, so we caught up with her to ask her about her learning experience and how she has put her knowledge and skills into practice!
headshot of female with brown hair

Nicola – Distinction Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care

Nicola has just completed her level 3 Apprenticeship as a lead Adult Care Worker securing a distinction. We asked her about her current role as a mental health support worker and discussed how her confidence has grown both professionally so she has taken on more responsibility and personally and the support she's received from her tutor, employer and family.
headshot of a man in a black t-shirt

Joe – Apprenticeship in Careers and Employability

Joe Watts is currently mid-way through his apprenticeship as an Employability Practioner, so we caught up with him to find out how he's getting on, how his opinion of apprenticeships has changed and the impact the apprenticeship has had on his job role.
Jonathan Weighall

Jonathan – Apprenticeship in Management

We spoke to Jonathan Weighall about gaining his apprenticeship in management, the apprenticeship that started his career and how he has professionally developed since gaining his qualification – and the importance of learning in securing his future, as well as that of his pupils. We also asked him if his learning experience was an animal what animal would it be …
Image of crying child hugging his mother

Demi: From homelessness to a future

Demi is a Connecting Choices participant who faced great personal barriers of homelessness and drug abuse, the trauma of being raped and the risk of losing her son. She found the Connecting Choices programme and turned her life around.
Three volunteers

Rebecca – Diploma in Social Media for Business

Rebecca has already applied the skills she learnt on her Diploma in her volunteer role at a local charity. She’s been able to connect with her audience on social media during lockdown when people needed it the most. Find out what have been her highs and lows and what she plans to do next!
Man standing in front of a school

Jack – Apprenticeship in Education

Completing his apprenticeship during lockdown, we spoke to Jack Metcalfe-Chase to find out about what his qualification in education means to him, his experience and the support he's received. Plus, we asked him to sum up his learning experience with us in words, in a song and as an animal ...
Care worker sat outside iwth an older man showing care and support

Distinction in Health and Social Care for Kieron!

Great news for Kieron who acheived a Distinction in Health and Social Care in February 2020! Determined to be able to provide the best support he could for vulnerable individuals in our society, and despite personal setbacks he persevered to achieve the highest grade possible in his apprenticeship!
A care worker supporting an elderly lady

Elizabeth’s Apprenticeship as a Lead Adult Care Worker

Elizabeth works in a domicillary care company in Maidstone, Kent. This is the first job that she has held in the care industry. On her first meeting with her Teaching Assessor Suzanne Marfleet, she explained she had Aspergers which affects her concentration and ability to form relationships.

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