I’m a single parent with a young son who has recently started school. I have been on and off Job Seeker’s Allowance and Income Support since having my son but before that I always worked. I’ve done all sorts – working in call centres, Fish and Chip shops and children’s play centres. I don’t like being on benefits, and find it really difficult to manage. Unfortunately, I often get into debt which is a massive worry for me and my family.
A couple of years ago, I started volunteering for my housing association to try and get extra skills and experience. After a period as a volunteer, they offered me a paid job. I was over the moon! It was a great buzz to be working again and not to have to sign on. Unfortunately, though, the contract with the housing association has now ended so I’m back signing on and looking for work.
I hate being on benefits, and am keen to find another job as soon as possible. In my experience you don’t get much help at all from the Job Centre – when I’ve found work it’s always been down to me, and not thanks to any ‘help’ they’ve provided. I’d much rather be earning my own money than signing on, and the sooner I find another job the better.