Just 3 months ago, I was yet another university graduate spat out into society and unable to find a job. 

Living off Universal Credit, applying for everything relevant that popped up on Indeed, subscribing to hundreds of company websites and eagerly awaiting a job opening, yet finding no luck at all. 

Luckily, my UC work coach told me about a government scheme called ‘Kickstart’. I’d not heard of it before, never seen it advertised, and had no idea what it would entail. 

Through Kickstart, however, I found my current job as an employee at PMA — the Practice Managers Association. 

It’s been my dream job ever since I was a child to be a writer or an editor. Either would work for me — both, preferably!  So when PMA contacted me to discuss my application and said I could be both a content writer and proof-reader for them, I was ecstatic. But that isn’t the only good thing PMA offered me.

Taken straight from their website, PMA describes itself as…

“The representative body for all managers and non-clinical professionals across the Health and Social Care sectors. We provide both professional development and career pathway support – and also professional recognition for all non-clinicians.”  

In other words, PMA helps the Health and Social Care sectors. In times such as these, where a global pandemic runs rampant and our services are more stretched than ever, it feels gratifying knowing that what we do actively helps the primary care frontlines — the people that do so much for our country.

I wondered why I hadn’t heard of Kickstart before? Kickstart is a government scheme aiming to provide jobs for 16 to 24 year olds who are on Universal Credit. It provides funding to employers so that they can give 6-month jobs to young people at risk of long-term unemployment.

These jobs are 25 hours per week for 6 months, with start dates of up to 31st December 2021. Furthermore, training and support can be provided so that Kickstart employees can continue to find work in the future.

What’s to lose?
If you are between the ages of 16 and 24, are unemployed, and are on Universal Credit, keep your eyes open. There’s a company out there who has a job position available with your name on it. And who knows? That company could be PMA.

The opportunities available are plentiful. While I work in the writing department at PMA, with a small, close-knit team of friendly people, there are many other opportunities for you to look into. You could work in a GP surgery doing admin or as a receptionist in a dentist.

Or perhaps Accounts is more for you, crunching numbers? Whatever your niche, PMA can find a space for you to fit in.

And fitting in comes extremely easily here!

I was incredibly nervous about my first job, terrified of slipping up or making a fool of myself, but every single person I’ve spoken to has been warm and hospitable — they make you feel at home right away. There was nothing at all to worry about; with such friendly colleagues, always offering to help and providing tips and reassurance, I could not have felt more welcome.

Overall, I couldn’t be more excited about my work with PMA. Getting the chance to work in a company that helps the UK’s healthcare sector, all the while performing my dream job as a writer and editor, surrounded by a lovely, family-like atmosphere…

If you’d like to learn more, ask about Kickstart vacancies, or look through open applications, please visit https://practicemanagersuk.org/kickstart-vacancies/ ‘

By Grey Murtagh