Our Pathways to Employment Project is a back-to-basics project to build the capacity, confidence and self-esteem of women in Sikh and other minority ethnic communities, enabling them to access mainstream employment and training opportunities from which they would otherwise be excluded.
Pathways is not just about helping women into work, although of course that’s the ultimate goal. It is about giving women a sense of empowerment that they will carry on wherever they choose to go in life. We want women to know who they are and recognize their own value. We want women to have a dream for their future and we want to help them achieve it.
The Pathways programme is tailored to fit the needs of the particular women who enrol. The kind of things we do include confidence building, positive communication, teamwork, computer and language skills, CV building and how to look for a job. We will also help women to get a voluntary job or work placement to build their experience.
We offer 1:1 support in whatever areas women need the most. For some women this means extra practice with written or spoken English; for others it means help with making a job application or finding the right college course. We also provide a ‘first-aid’ casework and referral service to address other issues that come to light during our employability work, such as mental health problems and domestic abuse.
Every woman is welcome. Although we have particular links with the Sikh community we are here to help all minority ethnic women, whatever their religion or nationality. So far we have welcomed Sikh, Christian, Hindu and Muslim women who come from India, Pakistan, Portugal, Ghana, Algeria and Bangladesh onto our programme. We can also provide childcare if needed.