Dave Pearson is back in full time work for the first time in more than two years after joining the team at Tesco’s new superstore in Highams Park, Waltham Forrest. The 27-year old is a single parent of four young children and has found it tough to find work. But now Dave is proud to be employed as a Customer Assistant for the UK’s leading retailer, and to be the 5,000th person helped out of long-term unemployment by Tesco’s Regeneration Partnership schemes.
“Tesco has really helped me turn my life around,” said Dave “and it’s thanks to them for believing in me and giving me this opportunity that my kids can look forward to a better future. The Tesco team could see that I’d work hard to do a great job for customers, so they weren’t concerned that I’d been out of work, and they’ve also helped me improve my literacy and numeracy skills.”
Dave found work at Tesco as part of the retailer’s ‘Regeneration Partnership’ programme which sees stores in areas of high deprivation guarantee a third of their jobs to local people who’ve been unemployed for more than six months.
For Dave, his journey began back in July when he was among thousands of local people who applied for the 74 places on the Partnership scheme run by Tesco along with Waltham Forest College and Job Centre Plus. The candidates were selected based on their attitude and people skills rather than their qualifications, and received 6 weeks pre-employment training to develop core retail skills before they started work in store.
Highams Park is the 45th Regeneration Partnership store, and its opening means that Tesco has now taken on and trained more than 5,000 long term unemployed people through partnerships with local councils and Job Centre Plus.
Judith Nelson, Tesco’s Personal Director for the UK, said “As the UK’s biggest private sector employer, we take seriously our responsibility to help people get into work. We are proud to give Dave, and others like him, the opportunity to show what a great job they can do for customers. For many of the 5,000 colleagues who’ve joined us through Regeneration Partnerships, this is just the break they need to go on and build great careers, and it’s an opportunity for us to support the communities we trade in.”