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Basingstoke residents to get help to find work

Employment Coordinator in Basingstoke
Date: 15 November 2012

Unemployed residents in Basingstoke will have more help in finding a job or training opportunities now after a leading housing association appointed a new employment coordinator.

Sovereign Housing Association has recruited Lorraine Hartung as its new Employment and Training Links coordinator. Lorraine, who has over 20 years’ experience of giving employment advice in Hampshire, will work closely with other agencies; her role is to complement the services they offer by helping residents to access them.

She will primarily be assisting Sovereign customers and those who live in areas where Sovereign has a high concentration of residents. She said: “I’m eager to make contact with residents who are looking for work. I will be able to give one-to-one help to individual clients who need advice, support or training.”

Lorraine’s work will cover Hampshire, Dorset and Devon. But her initial focus is on Basingstoke.

“Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has identified Buckskin, South Ham and South Ham Extension as being areas where the number of people claiming out of work benefits is double that of the borough as a whole. These are areas where I can make a difference,” Lorraine explained.

“As the main landlord in these areas, Sovereign feels a real responsibility to address social exclusion, and we have a good track record of finding work and apprenticeships for our residents. Our overriding approach is to work closely with partners such as the council to help build strong and resilient communities, as well as providing homes. I see my role as an important part of achieving that aim.”

Based in Basingstoke, Lorraine’s job will be to give advice to all residents who are looking for work, whether through indentifying work opportunities with Sovereign and its contractors, arranging apprenticeships, improving their qualifications, accessing grants to get training or advising on what benefits they are entitled to if they find work.

Residents looking for work who are interested in speaking to Lorraine about how she can help them to find work should contact Sovereign for a referral form.

Sovereign has had an Employment and Training Links Coordinator in other regions for the past three years. Since 2009, it has helped 53 people into work, 88 into accredited training and 19 into placements internally in Sovereign. Twenty people have done apprenticeships in that time, 15 of whom are still working with Sovereign.
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