Young mum Jet Smith has kick-started her career as a seamstress with the help of an apprenticeship programme.
Previously unemployed, Jet, from Layton, wanted to get back into work after the birth of her daughter.
She spotted a position for a seamstress in a shop window, something she had taken an interest in at school and applied at Julia’s Alterations on Westcliffe Drive.
Jet, 23, secured a part-time position at the business but to progress work full-time on a salary, she required new qualifications and training.
Then Blackpool training provider, PHX Training which has access to funding for small businesses stepped in to help.
PHX Training’s Paul Farrell, helped the owner of the business, Julia Doherty, get a £1,500 Apprenticeship Entitlement Grant for Jet to gain a valuable qualification in customer service. The apprenticeship combines practical work-based qualifications as well as core certificates in English and maths.
Jet said: “I can’t believe my luck, returning to work was so important to me as I wanted to give my daughter the best in life. In today’s tough climate it’s tricky to get a job without any qualifications but after just a few days working for Julia, I was enrolled on a life-changing apprenticeship.
“I’m now working 30 hours a week and once I have taken my exams, I can even opt to take the NVQ Level 3 to further my knowledge.”
Julia Doherty said: “Alterations and sewing is a dying trade with young people choosing to embark upon other types of careers but business is on the up due to the recession.
“There’s a two–tier benefit to taking on an apprentice, I’ve been able to develop the next generation and I’ve been able to grow my business too.”