Jordanna's Story

Jordanna, a young person on the GM Talent Match programme

Jordanna had a fractured educational journey as a result of illness: “Towards the end of school I was really poorly. I did my GCSEs in hospital. I was in and out for seven years – so the whole of high school basically.”

Jordanna’s health difficulties continued into college where she had started a public services course: “Even when I caught up on coursework, I still felt behind everyone else because I had not been in the talk sessions.” After completing her first year Jordanna left college.

Living at home with her grandparents, she worked in retail for a short time but knew this was not playing to her strengths. She went back to college for careers advice: “I went back to my tutors to see if there was an apprenticeship I could do – they just said ‘go on this website’. It was like they were turning a blind eye.”

It would be 12 months before Jordanna met with Anthony, a Greater Manchester Talent Match Talent Coach through The Manchester College. Jordanna recalls those times: “I was getting depressed and felt lost – like I was in a dark hole. I was stuck. Everything had come to a standstill. I knew I was getting older and needed to find out where I wanted to be with my life.” At this time Jordanna did not claim benefits, feeling her pride was at stake. After being given Anthony’s details Jordanna initially lacked the confidence to contact him. When the pair did meet they started taking a look at Jordanna’s CV. “I’d not had help with CV building before, college didn’t help,” said Jordanna. “Anthony broke the it down. He explained to me what a good CV is, what details need to go in and how to present it."

Together they focused on Jordanna’s strengths and interests and found an opportunity online: a four-week course for Health and Social Care. A ward placement was promoted as part of the course. Jordanna succesfuly applied for this after two interviews. “I was so nervous about interviews. But I did role play interviews with another Talent Coach at the Manchester College. This was like the real thing as I didn’t know her – that built my confidence.

“When it came to my final day of placement I got offered a nursing assistant job from the ward manager. I was shocked, I did not expect it all. I’ve been in this role for a year and a half. I now want to start my training towards becoming a paramedic.

“I don’t know where I’d be without Anthony. Probably in the same position or bouncing from job to job. Not jobs I want, just ones to pass the time. Anthony made me realise that I’m just as good as anyone else and I was capable of doing or being what I wanted, and I can follow my dreams. Not only did he make me find my inner-self, Anthony has made me find courage, strength, stability and independence. Whenever I need someone he’s always there.”