Parental Employability Support

Our Parental Employability Support (PES) programme is funded by the Scottish Government's Tackling Child Poverty funding stream. The goal of our PES programme is to reduce levels of child poverty by increasing the income of parents, in-line with Best Start, Bright Futures.

  • Are you a parent feeling the impact of the cost of living crisis?
  • Are you a working parent looking to increase your family income?
  • Are you a parent trying to take those first steps into work?
  • Would you like support to do further learning or a qualification?

If you say yes to any of the above questions and have the time and commitment to make a change, our Parental Employability Support programme may be able to help you. We are able to help any parent who has a low income.

We are particularly interested in hearing from parents who tick one of these boxes:

  • lone parent
  • parent or child with a disability
  • parent of 3 or more children
  • parent from a minority ethnic background
  • parent with a child under 1 years old
  • parent under 25 years old

What we offer:

  • help to understand welfare benefits and support with benefit applications
  • better off in work calculations and support with the cost of living crisis to maximise your household's income
  • support to explore possible career paths and work towards an employment goal
  • formal training and/or qualifications to progress in your current role or move to a new area of work
  • paid work experience opportunities
  • one to one employability support until you reach your goal

Pauline's story

Pauline is a single parent and lives with her 2 children. She last worked in retail but was made redundant in 2019. Since having her own children Pauline has become interested in issues that can affect children. Pauline wanted to transfer this interest into a career where she could support children but wasn’t sure how to go about it. When an advert offering Paid Work Experience Placements in schools as a Classroom Assistant arrived in her inbox Pauline immediately applied.

Paid work experience

My upmost gratitude for all of the help and support you and the team have given me over the last 7 months. If you hadn't given me that little push I needed I would never have applied and been successful.” - Pauline

East Lothian Works staff supported Pauline from day one to get the placement set up. She attended her placement 2 days a week to fit in with family life at the time and she also completed relevant training. As part of the process there are regular reviews with Pauline, the key contact in school and EL Works staff. Pauline received fantastic feedback at her first review, impressing school staff with her ability to fit right in, build relationships with pupils and staff and learn all aspects of the role. Taking part in this placement helped Pauline to gain valuable skills and experience in the classroom to add to her existing knowledge and understanding.

Moving into employment

Pauline was encouraged and supported to apply for Supply Classroom Assistant posts when these jobs came up. She was also supported to prepare for the interview and was successful. Shortly after this, two Classroom Assistant posts were advertised in the same school where Pauline did her placement, she applied and was successful here too!

Ashleigh's story

“Paid Work Experience is the best thing that I have ever done. It helped me so much in working around my 2 young children and gave me the experience and built my confidence enough to get a job doing what I want to do. I couldn't be happier or more grateful” - Alison

Alison was a lone parent that had previously worked in retail and hospitality. She had been unemployed 6 years before she made contact with East Lothian Works. Ashleigh participated in a Paid Work Experience placement as a Classroom Assistant commencing.

Work experience and training

During her Paid Work Experience placement Alison attained a qualification in Early Learning and Childcare after attending East Lothian Works’ Skills for Work classes. Whilst attending these classes and the work experience placement Alison was able to develop her work and employability skills.

Moving into employment

Alison was then supported to apply for a part-time position as a Classroom Assistant. She was successful in securing this position.