Thai-born Kanchana (Kay) came to the UK in 2000. A lone parent and carer for a young son with severe epilepsy and Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), she has overcome extreme challenges and language barriers.
Formerly unemployed, she was recruited by the Intermediate Labour Market project, operated through Hertfordshire Careers Service, which gives paid work experience to people with significant barriers to employment.
Kay’s learning has been part-funded by the European Social Fund, and she has progressed from pre-entry to level 1, through to level 3 and has now gained qualifications in Accountancy, Sage and Book-keeping. She has gone on to complete an ESOL course, City & Guilds Literacy at level 2, and level 2 in Effective Business Communications and Public Service Interpreting (these courses represent a full level 3 qualification).
Following a work placement with Herts Careers Service, she was offered a job as a junior administrator, leading to a permanent position with greater responsibilities. “I am very grateful that I have had the opportunity to improve my English, develop skills and gain qualifications that, without doubt, have improved my life chances,” she says.