Apprenticeship with GMP for Bilal

Posted on the 28th August 2018

For eight long years Bilal struggled to find employment. Blind from birth, he discovered that employers had too many negative preconceptions about his abilities and so he was never offered an interview.

Now Bilal’s Supported Internship has led to an apprenticeship  with Greater Manchester Police. From early autumn he will be training for his new role, receiving and processing 101 calls from members of the public.

Bilal smiling

Bilal proved his abilities in data entry while on our Manchester Supported Internship based at Citylabs.

The Internship offers a brilliant employability qualification tutored by The Manchester College. Bilal received additional support from the college’s Visual Impairment support staff, including Cordelia Newsome.

Supported work placements, tailored to individual abilities and aspirations,  enable interns to develop their strengths, as Lisa Crank explains.

Bilal's first placement was with The Christie in Oldham in a data entry role. He is registered blind and used screen-reading technology to help him in his data entry role. (See Bilal in our top image with Eve Lightfoot, Director of Workforce at The Christie.)

The feedback from the staff was excellent and they could not thank him enough for helping them with their project.

Bilal had to travel from Withington to Oldham, a very long journey for him but he is so committed to working that he was more than happy to do this.

Lisa Crank - Pure Employment Officer

On completion of his placement at The Christie, Bilal  undertook a volunteer role at Beacon Counselling in Stockport, welcoming visitors and imputing their details on the computer.

Bilal’s data entry experience and his commitment were key factors in his successful application to Greater Manchester Police.

Lisa had spotted the  apprenticeship opportunity and knew it was a good fit for his talents. With Bilal, she contacted apprenticeships provider Damar Training and his application process began.

After a one-to-one interview, a maths and English assessment plus a data entry practical, Bilal was delighted to be offered his  apprenticeship.

I am very pleased and am looking forward to starting at Greater Manchester Police. My family are very happy and very proud of me.

I am hoping if I am successful on the apprenticeship I will go on to gain a permanent role within Greater Manchester Police.

Bilal - Apprentice, Greater Manchester Police

We are really delighted that all Bilal’s hard work and commitment are paying off.  He has proved that he deserves this, his next big step toward paid employment. We will continue to support him in his training and wish him every success for the future.

Great work Bilal!

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