Every day is a second chance

Mark’s experience with Jericho was rocky. He was often absent and made no contact to explain why. Nevertheless we persevered and kept him in employment even offering him an alternative job role when his actions could have resulted in us showing him the door.


Learner’s Background:

Mark started his Customer Service Apprenticeship in the ReUse department of Jericho aged 19. He has a complicated relationship with his parents and frequent arguing and conflict resulted in him moving in with his cousin. Mark feels that he gets on well with his parents when he doesn’t live with them although if he visits and his mother isn’t there his father will not invite him in.

Mark suffers with depression and ADHD and is currently taking medication to help this but can get angry and aggressive in certain situations. He is learning to cope with this and attempts to remove himself from the area before getting angry. Mark has high anxiety and tends to worry about daily events.

Mark’s social circle revolves around drugs and he and many of his friends regularly take cannabis and legal highs.

Mark achieved good grades at GCSE and he has also completed a number of courses as part of the air cadets. Mark is also a regular visitor to The Gap, a youth club in Sutton Coldfield aimed at improving opportunities for marginalised young people.

Mark’s work history has included short periods of employment with a range of companies in different sectors followed by a time of unemployment. Mark has not had a full time job which has lasted more than a couple of months.



Mark started his apprenticeship well and was offered an extra days work to help the staff shortage at ReUse. He was a hard worker and described as a ‘breath of fresh air’ by his line manager. His attitude to work began to change when a friend he knew from outside work returned to ReUse after a period of ill health. Together they began to influence each other in a negative way and became disruptive and work shy. This resulted in him returning to his contracted hours.

At the start of hisapprenticeship Mark moved back in with his parents in the hope that a steady job would help ease the pressure of their relationship. This did not last very long and he returned to his cousins, although soon left after feeling he has outstayed his welcome and moved to a hostel. This coupled with the death of a close friend due to a drugs overdose and a sick grandmother meant he started to regularly miss work then stopped attending altogether. A number of attempts were made to contact him but they were unsuccessful until Mark called and agreed to attend a meeting to facilitate his return to ReUse. He worked for a couple of shifts but then failed to attend resulting in a disciplinary which he also did not come to. Despite Jericho visiting his hostel Mark was again not contactable for a number of weeks.

Mark eventually spoke to his mentor and explained he was again going through some personal issues and his sick Grandmother had died. He showed a willingness to continue working and said he had not taken drugs in a number of weeks. Instead of sacking Mark for his multiple periods of unauthorised absence he was offered another chance. It was agreed that Mark would benefit from having more structure in his life and a good move would be to the telemarketing team.

Mark completed the first three weeks in telemarketing with 100% attendance but suddenly stopped and made no contact. Mark was invited to a meeting to discuss his absences which he confirmed but failed to attend. He was dismissed in February 2015. On average during the 22 weeks of his apprenticeship Mark had 1½ days unauthorised absence a week.

Despite his troubled personal life and poor attendance when Mark was at work he was polite and well presented. He showed a willingness to improve after his move to telemarketing and enjoyed the office environment.

The relationship that Mark developed with Jericho meant he was happy to visit despite his sacking. He popped into see his mentors to say he is now in a more stable living arrangement and although he is still in a hostel he feels it is more like a home with the residents all interacting like a family. He is currently employed in a telemarketing role with Unicom but is looking for a more stable job that is less commission based.

Subscribe to our newsletter
* indicates required