Project SEARCH Case Study: Shoaib
In just over three months on Project SEARCH, I have learnt many new and important skills. From general office skills such as scanning, laminating and filing to communication skills such as talking on the phone and speaking to patients. I am gradually getting better and better at these skills but the most useful ones I have learnt are timekeeping and attendance. If I don’t show up, not only will I miss out on valuable work experience but other people will have to do my job for me. I feel extremely fortunate to be on this programme and to be gaining so many useful skills that I want to take full advantage of it.
When I started on the programme, my job coaches thought I needed to become more confident so they decided to place me in the Eye Emergency Centre to work within a small, supportive team. This was an excellent first placement for me and the managers were incredibly helpful as I settled in. This was a new experience for them as well as they had never welcomed a Project SEARCH intern before.
This placement gave me a real boost in confidence and was a great opportunity to interact with others. My job coaches noticed how well I was dealing with patients and suggested that I move to Outpatients Reception where I would have more opportunities to meet and talk to patients. I have really enjoyed this placement; there is always a lot to do including ordering taxis for patients, finding wheelchairs for them and helping them if they are late for their appointment. I find this very rewarding; I love helping people and it’s a great feeling when they thank me as I feel appreciated for what I do.
In the afternoons, I work with the secretaries in the Eye Treatment Centre helping them send out letters. It is great to be useful and the team really appreciate my high level of accuracy and my numeracy skills. I have had such positive feedback from the teams I work with who have said I have a strong work ethic. I learnt this from my parents who are fantastic role models for me. It has been great to come home and tell them about what I have been doing each day. It is very important that they are involved in the programme and their encouragement and praise has meant such a lot to me.
Whilst working in the Eye Treatment Centre, one of the admin team, Jacqueline, saw me organising the medical records and was impressed by the work I was doing. She came to the Project SEARCH Team Room and asked if she could mentor me. Apparently this has never happened before which is a huge compliment to me. I can’t wait to start working with Jacqueline.
Ever since I joined Project SEARCH, I have had a keen interest in therapies and I hope that I can work there for my next placement. I know my job coaches are working hard to arrange this and I greatly appreciate the efforts they make to ensure everyone feels happy on the programme. All the interns are brilliant and I am so glad to be part of the team.