After getting no-where with employers Kelly decided that she needed some experience to help her stand out, and after being accepted on Lincolnshire Co-op's Kickstart programme she now feels confident and equipped to take on the next step in her journey.

Kelly has always been a keen learner. At college she studied hairdressing, business and customer care skills to help improve her chances of finding work. Kelly knew that whilst qualifications are really import, she also needed work experience to help her secure a job.

Having spoken to her work coach at her local job centre, Kelly applied for a six-month Kickstart work placement with Lincolnshire Co-op, a Prince’s Trust Silver Patron.

Kelly was nervous during the interview but did better than expected. She was concerned that she would not secure a placement, as there are so many other young people looking for work and she had applied for many other jobs but never heard back from the employer.

To Kelly’s delight she quickly received a call from Lincolnshire Co-op confirming she had secured the placement.

Since joining the Lincolnshire Co-op, Kelly has developed many new skills by working on the shopfloor and behind the scenes, as well as taking part in lots of online training. She is now till trained, knows about health and safety, age restricted purchases and how to keep the store Covid Safe. She is really enjoying her work, especially receiving and checking deliveries.

Kelly is also receiving training and coaching from The Prince’s Trust who support Lincolnshire Co-op with their ‘Kickstart Wraparound’ training. This gives young people all the support they need to develop skills that will help them progress their career after the six-month placement ends.

Kickstart has been great for me. It’s really helped build my confidence and mental health, as I’m getting out of the house, meeting lots of new people and I’m always busy. Everyone at Lincolnshire Co-op is really friendly and supportive. Its lovely when customer compliment me when I have helped them and it’s a massive boost to my confidence.

“I would definitely recommend doing a Kickstart placement to any young person. Before I stated Kickstart I thought it would be like school or college, but it’s not. It’s a real job and they treat you with respect.”

Barbara Farren from Lincolnshire Co-op commented:

It’s wonderful that Kelly is enjoying her Kickstart placement so much. She is doing really well and I am keen to watch her develop in her role.