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Game Changer

Ethan’s Story

By 22nd January 2020 No Comments
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Game Changer helps Ethan find full time employment and teaches him invaluable skills

Ethan first came to Game Changer in August 2019, mostly out of curiosity. 

“I was walking to the Job Centre to sign on when I came across the Real Ideas office In Liskeard and decided to go in.”

Ethan spoke to the Game Changer team and decided to give the programme a go. He was taken upstairs where he was able to fill out some forms and learn more about Game Changer and how it will help him on his career journey.

The first step was to take part in an induction week, learning about different job sectors  Cornwall has to offer. This included programming robots with Software Cornwall, exploring the marine and fishing industry at Pengelly’s in Looe and Cornwall Marine Network and Ethan also visited the Eden Project for a wild cooking workshop. There was also an introduction to music production workshop, which sparked off some interests for Ethan.

“I really enjoy video games, and I’d never thought about the fact that people make music for them, I thought that would be a really cool job…

“I think the induction week was good because it opened up my eyes to a lot of different paths. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, so it was a really good eye opener. I realised that there’s a lot of jobs out there that interest me, I just didn’t know that they existed!”

The induction week is a great way for participants to hone their skills, as well as open their eyes to all of the job opportunities out there for them in Cornwall.

As part of the Game Changer project, Ethan got to go along to the Illuminate Light Festival in Plymouth and have the opportunity to see behind the scenes.

“Illuminate interested me a lot. My brain just went on fire and it sparked a lot of ideas in my head.”

Both Illuminate and the Induction showed Ethan different directions he could go in whilst looking for a job.

“They really opened my eyes and showed me potential of what I can do for a job but also for hobbies.”

During his time with Game Changer, Ethan was able to attend regular job hack sessions, which enabled him to meet other young people who live near him, as well as giving him the opportunity to update his CV and apply for jobs. This has helped him develop a positive attitude towards work and learning.

One example of this is when Paul, a Game Changer navigator, encouraged Ethan to contact an employer directly to follow up on a job application Ethan had submitted and not heard back about. Paul said:

“After showing Ethan the effectiveness of contacting an employer directly, he made two phone calls and got two interviews, as he had showed his confidence and determination.”

Ethan managed to get a job picking and packing in a warehouse after calling up the employer.

“I applied for it and I hadn’t got a response, so Paul said to call them. They said I hadn’t got the job, but they called me back for another opening, thanks to that original phone call! After that, I learnt the importance of following things up.”

Ethan eventually left that job, and with the help of Game Changer, applied for a job as a support worker. After following it up with a few phone calls, he managed to get a full time position.

“I did a college course in IT and one in health and social care. I really wanted to put one of those to use, and health and social care is something I’m quite passionate about. I like to help people.”

Not only has he managed to gain full time employment, but he has also developed skills which will continue to be of use in all other future career opportunities. He has also made long term friends through the Game Changer project, who he still sees now.

Although Ethan isn’t currently an active participant, as he’s busy with his new job, Paul still checks in with him to see how his job is going, and Ethan knows he can still go in to the Liskeard office whenever he wants or needs to.

Ethan feels very positive about his experience with the Game Changer project, and said he’d 100% recommend it.

“I was hesitant at first, but as soon as the induction started, I could see how good it was. I thought straight from the beginning I’d love to recommend this to somebody, and if they were hesitant like me, I’d tell them to just do the induction. If you don’t like it after that, you can leave, but at least try that because it really draws you in and shows how worthwhile it is.

“It’s a really good system. Everybody there is really friendly and it feels like a home away from home. Every Friday I’d look forward to at least getting out of my house for a bit.”

Ethan said that it was a great place to meet people, alongside developing the skills you need to apply for and get a job.

“For me, I know it’s made a difference and I’m really appreciative of everything they’ve done for me.”

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