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Supported Intern, Sam, is not stopped by the snow for a 7.30am start at Sheet Metal Solutions - 28/02/2018

Supported Intern, Sam, is not stopped by the snow for a 7.30am start at Sheet Metal Solutions

Sam is one of our Medway based interns.  Today, Gemma, our Project Lead for Medway Supported Internships let me know that despite the snow and ice, and many people staying home to avoid the weather, Sam has not failed to get into work this week for his daily 7.30am starts!  Gemma says - "he has made it into work today and yesterday in the snow. He is a very dedicated young man with a very supportive mum, too".

Here is Sam's story so far...

We called Mel from Sheet Metal Solutions when we found a job advert for a Trainee Workshop Assisstant and thought our student Sam would be perfect for the role! Sam likes to work in a physical, hands on way and was really interested in metal work as a career. After a conversation on the phone explaining our programme, Mel invited us in for an interview. Sam was great in the interview and it was clear he would fit into the workplace.  The only thing we [the Supported Internship job coaches] did was talk about the programme, Sam did the rest!  Mel interviewed other candidates but they picked Sam as the successful interviewee! This gave Sam a massive confidence boost and we arranged a start date for two weeks before Christmas. The dedication from Sam and his work coaches meant that they all braved the cold dark mornings so Sam could start his 7.30am shifts on time.  In the New Year, Sam and his work coaches began travelling on the train together until Sam was confident to travel alone. 

2 months in and Sam is doing amazingly well. He works 7.30am-16.00pm, Monday to Friday and is working hard under the supervision of the skilled staff at Sheet Metal Soltuions. Sam is being trained to powder coat metal and will eventually be trained up in every aspect of the business. 

A word about this employer from the Supported Internship team

"They opened their doors and interviewed Sam on the same day as their other candidates. They offered him a chance and have enabled him to travel on the train by paying for his monthly train ticket and including him in the Christmas raffle and bonus list! He is a fully fledged member of the team and treated exactly the same as the other employees. Sam was given safety clothing and uniform such as steel toe cap boots, hoodie and t shirt. Sam's employers were not happy that they couldn't pay him [due to the Supported Internship regulations] but they recognised the value of this and wanted to support our programme so they found creative ways to keep Sam interested as long as he did the work expected. Some of these placement benefits include the company paying for Sam to take his bike test in March so they can then get him a motorbike to travel to work. In July, they will employ him as a fully fledged member of staff and the bike will be his. It is worth noting that both Sam and his family are enthusiastic bikers, as are the guys at Sheet Metal Solutions - a match made in heaven!" - Gemma Cooper, Project Lead, Supported Internships Medway

What support does Skillnet and the Supported Internships team provide now Sam is in placement?

We check in and support the employer and Sam once a week now and make sure we are available to adapt our support for both Sam and his employers if needed.

If you are an employer and would like to find out how we can work with you to take on a Supported Intern, check out our Supported Internships page or contact Gemma at


Tel: 01227 374 285

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Unit 3, Roper Yard, Roper Road
Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7ER.

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