A COLCHESTER charity dedicated to providing end-of-life care to those with life-limiting illnesses is now helping disadvantaged young people find work.

St Helena Hospice, located in Myland Hall Chase, Barncroft Close, has eagerly jumped onboard with the Government’s Kickstart scheme.

The programme supplies employers with funding which is then used to create more employment opportunities for 16 to 24 year olds who are on Universal Credit.

The organisation is now supporting more than 40 young people in helping them gain invaluable work experience and develop a career path.

As a result, six of them, Maliha Ahmed, William Leatham, Andrew Seymour, Zak Bishop, Orla Hegarty-Denham and Aleena Villers have already been offered jobs.

Maliha has taken on the role of ward clerk, while William and Andrew were offered positions to remain working in the lottery team.

Harwich and Manningtree Standard: Maliha Ahmed is thrilled to have been employed as a ward clerk in the St Helena Hospice inpatient unitMaliha Ahmed is thrilled to have been employed as a ward clerk in the St Helena Hospice inpatient unit

Zak is staying on as a house clearance assistant in the retail team and Orla is now a maintenance administrator and Aleena will remain in her marketing assistant role.

Maliha landed the job after her applying when her initial six month placement as project administrator came to an end.

She said: “I was introduced to Kickstart through the Job Centre which led me to be offered an interview at St Helena Hospice.

“The staff at St Helena Hospice were very patient with me and provided me with the support and training to adjust to working life, and to carry out my job effectively.

“Over my placement I found my feet and the role has given me a sense of purpose and direction in life and I’m very grateful and excited for this next step in my career.”

The Kickstart scheme has so far enabled the creation of 47 positions across St Helena Hospice with a further 17 vacancies in departments throughout the organisation.

Hayley Joshua, director of HR at St Helena Hospice, said: “We’re delighted we’ve been able to employ so many young adults to work across the organisation.

“We are helping them gain vital skills which will hopefully aid them in securing future employment when their placement with us end.”