Veronica Blake Nhg

22 May 2024

Helping Grahame Park resident Veronica back into work

As part of our regeneration of Grahame Park the social economic investment team, through Make It Happen, partner with organisations to deliver programmes that support employment opportunities for residents. These partners include the Department of Work and Pensions, The Shaw Trust and BOOST mentoring.

Having accessed community and employment services since 2016, Grahame Park resident Veronica Blake is a shining example of the positive impact that these services can have on residents' lives.

Veronica is in her 60s and while eligible to remain out of work due to health conditions she was determined to get into a job. She said the services she has accessed on Grahame Park have been fantastic for her: “I’ve received support from Notting Hill Genesis, the Colindale Communities Trust, Shaw Trust and BOOST on Grahame Park. The people here have supported me through the good times and the bad times.”

She has now started working in the bar at South Hertfordshire Golf Club in nearby Totteridge. Veronica said the role has been immensely positive for her in many ways: “I was worried I wouldn’t be able to do it as I’ve been out of work for a long time, but I’ve proved to myself that I can.”

Carla Nash of the Department for Work and Pensions is based on Grahame Park every week and said it has been incredible to watch Veronica grow. She said: “We've watched her blossom, and she knows that we are all here to continue to support her if she needs the help.”

Yan Cheng is Veronica’s employment officer at the Shaw Trust, an organisation supporting people with complex needs into work. Yan helped Veronica update her CV, conducted mock interviews with her and connected her with different job opportunities. 

She said Veronica is more confident and happier since starting her new role: “She questioned whether at her age she would be able to find work, but now she sees how valuable and needed she is at her workplace.”

Social economic programme manager Cali Ibrahim added: “It has been so affirming to see the different Make it Happen partners collaborate to offer life changing support and opportunities to our residents. We’re so happy for Veronica!”

Offering coordinated, dedicated employment services is a core component of the social economic work carried out on Grahame Park during its regeneration.

We are inspired by residents like Veronica, and stories like hers reflect the incredible work we do with our partners. Everyone involved in Make it Happen services on Grahame Park is committed to continuing this vital work, ensuring that the local community can access opportunities throughout the regeneration.