By Mohsin:

I first heard about Community Connections from my sister who works for the NHS. I didn’t know how it could help me but my sister encouraged me to go – and I am glad she did.

I have Asperger Syndrome and find it hard to communicate with people. I have never had confidence in anything I’ve done, even though I have a degree from Essex University. If I’m told to do something I always try and do it to my best ability, but I need to learn how to believe in myself.

When I first joined the Community Connections project, I had to be accompanied to my appointments by a member of my family as I was so nervous.

Since joining the project, I have upgraded my Microsoft Office skills, attended a CV workshop, an employability workshop and received one-to-one help with job searching, confidence building, self-esteem and interview skills.

My Employment Support Adviser encouraged me to attend a 10-week employability course at Brentwood Community Print. This went well and the company asked me to stay on as a volunteer where I am gaining experience interacting with people and being part of a team.

This was something I found very hard before coming to Signpost. Since joining the project, my confidence has grown a lot – to the extent that I have recently passed my driving test.

This success gave me confidence and really boosted my self-esteem

As part of my volunteering, I am learning how to use different graphics software and have created a ‘Save the Date’ wedding card for my sister.

I now feel more confident in applying for jobs, at an appropriate level, in the graphics and animation sectors. This has helped me to have a more positive mindset about finding work.

In December 2019, I was asked to design a Christmas card for a client of Brentwood Community Print. The client purchased the Christmas card and I received recognition for this.

This success gave me confidence and really boosted my self-esteem. Volunteering has done so much for my mental wellbeing as well as improving my skills for gaining employment.

The project has been very helpful to me and I now feel more confident in myself and my ability to find work.