Change 100 with Leonard Cheshire10 Jul, 20208 minutes
About Change 100Change 100 is an initiative run by our charity partner, Leonard Cheshire. It...
About Change 100
Change 100 is an initiative run by our charity partner, Leonard Cheshire. It’s a programme of summer internships that aims to unlock the untapped potential of students and graduates with disabilities. It gives organisations access to a talent pool full of ability, creativity, and insight.
Leonard Cheshire launched Change 100 in 2013, with an ambition to change the employment landscape for disabled students and recent graduates. You can see more about Change 100 here.
Welcome to Sam Jones
We were thrilled to get involved with this fantastic initiative and on the 1st July we welcomed Sam Jones into the business as HR Assistant.
Here’s a bit about Sam in his own words:
My name is Sam Jones and I’m a nineteen-year-old student, on an internship at Meridian Business Support as part of their HR department. I got the job after I went through an application process with Leonard Cheshire. They specialize in getting people who may fear they are under-equipped or not 'good enough' to get into work by offering them extra support and guidance along the way.
Leonard Cheshire and their program ‘Change100’ helped me get my placement with Meridian by matching me with a role which suited my needs.
In January of this year, I was debating whether I really could handle the anxiety and stress of applying for jobs. Six months later we were in a worldwide pandemic, and I had no idea if all my stress and sleepless nights would have been a waste after all. But I kept my hopes high and I DID NOT GIVE UP!!
In my weekly blog, I will document my life on the job – challenges, achievements, highs and lows, this will be my way of sharing my experience with others to hopefully show that if you work hard and challenge yourself you can achieve things beyond your expectations of yourself.
First Week at Meridian
For someone that struggles with anxiety – and an unhealthy amount of overthinking, the fact that Meridian, and in particular the Head of Human Resources Sarah Ward, took so much time to put me at ease was absolutely incredible.
Everyone has been so welcoming and kind, I don’t feel like ‘just an intern’, I feel welcome and already part of the family. Even the CEO took an hour out of his day to meet me, and we have since been in contact via text and e-mail. Every department is taking the time to reach out and introduce themselves, tell me a little about themselves and explain how and why they ended up doing what they are. This advice and experience is invaluable, as a young teenager soon graduating university and going into the world of work, hearing other professional advice in such a friendly and personal manner makes it easy to absorb the information and ask questions and have conversation about work, even in a more informal and friendly format.
Richard and Sarah are also continuously going above and beyond to make sure I am okay and understand what is required of me. They both text and call regularly and take the time to make sure things are working and I have grasped it, rather than explaining it and leaving me to it. For me, this is perfect, as over-thinking can mean I am too worried to ask people to repeat steps in fear of annoying them, but they are so friendly and understanding, and make sure I have no questions before leaving me to my devices.
My first week has genuinely flown by, and I have loved meeting everyone, and am greatly looking forward to the future.