Dwayne’s world has been transformed thanks to advisor
When Dwayne Hadland needed help to turn his life around, our Employment and Training Advisor Rob Friday was there.
This is his story…
“Four years ago, I moved to the Beechdale area in Walsall. I was a recovering alcoholic at the time and I was looking for help.
One day, I was in the Friendship Care and Housing offices trying to sort out arrangements for a house and my benefits. I explained to the staff that I wanted to get back into work but everywhere I turned, I was getting nowhere.
“They explained that they had an Employment and Training Advisor who visited the offices every Friday. They arranged an appointment for me to meet him and that’s when everything started to change for the better.
“During my first interview with Rob, I was very quiet. I’d never done anything like that before and since stopping drinking, I’d had problems talking to people, my confidence was very low and I had just generally struggled to integrate.
“However, slowly but surely, those weekly meetings with Rob really built up my confidence again. We chatted about the future, wrote up a CV together and discussed what I wanted to do for work.
“As we were talking, Rob noticed that I had an eye and mind for detail. We discussed carpentry and a potential career in that. With his help, I enrolled at Walsall College to do a carpentry qualification, juggling my studies alongside a job that I’d secured in a warehouse for a high street shop.
“I completed the Level Two qualification without a hitch and hope to do Level Three in the future, which is something I never thought I’d be able to say.”
"Now my confidence is through the roof and that’s thanks to Rob. I owe him a lot. He’s absolutely brilliant and has helped me beyond words. I’ve gone from strength-to-strength and gained so much since that first meeting with him; not least someone who I now call a friend."
Two years on and for Dwanye, now 34, life has changed for the better.
He married his partner a little over a month ago and now has a secure, full-time job. He is happy and confident and is four years sober.
He still puts his qualified carpentry skills to good use on a regular basis.
He continued: “The qualification certainly serves me well at home – I’m always busy decorating or doing DIY! I made the post box for the cards at our wedding as well as the cake stand and all the centre-pieces for the tables.
“The plan now is to go back to college and do my English and Maths GCSE equivalents. I didn’t get those at school, so it’s my ambition to do them and it’s Rob who’s helped to give me that drive.
“He thinks that I’ve got the ability to be a manager one day, which is a huge boost for me. After the GCSE equivalents, perhaps I’ll move on to a management course. Every day it’s about getting bigger, better and stronger.
“I’m currently working in a call centre for a tyre company. I help to train the new staff and I’m making really good progress.
“If I look back to that first meeting with Rob, when I hardly talked, I couldn’t imagine that I’d be doing what I do now; having the confidence to speak to people on the phone all day.
“Back then, you’d have only got yes or no answers from me, but now my confidence is through the roof and that’s thanks to Rob. I owe him a lot.
“I’ve never met someone like him in my life,” he added. “He’s absolutely brilliant and has helped me beyond words. I’ve gone from strength-to-strength and gained so much since that first meeting with him; not least someone who I now call a friend.
“To anyone who’s in the position that I was I’d say; if the help is there, then take it. You’ve got nothing to lose and potentially everything to gain.”
Rob said: “I’m really proud to have had the chance to work with Dwayne, helping him identify and develop the talent within him.
“I am certain that his energy and drive, matched with the determination to do the very best for his family, will lead him on to even greater achievements.”