At bemix, we support people to work towards and achieve their goals and develop their skills and interests - including within our Supported Employment programme (‘Progress’ is one of bemix ‘Wider Values’). Our free job-matching service is a key benefit to young people and employers who are part of the programme. Our team are knowledgeable and skilled in carefully matching interns with placements that meet their interests, skills and aspirations. We work closely with our employers to identify and understand, often currently unmet, needs within a business. Both intern and employer are fully supported throughout the entire placement to ensure a successful journey from start to finish, and even, beyond.

Recently, we caught up with interns Luke and Naomi, and their employers, to hear about how job-matches in Medway have so far been a success.

Luke’s internship at B&M Stores in Strood.

B&M is one of the UK’s leading variety retailers, spotted on many High Streets across the country. There are over 600 stores in the UK, employing over 28,000 staff.  Luke is currently on placement at a store in Strood, Medway. 

“I am a warehouse assistant - I am good at this job because I am organised, diligent and competent. I like everything about this job, I feel comfortable and I get on with the other staff members. Travel training I found very challenging to begin with but it is now much easier because I have a bus pass.” -  Luke

As with all of our Supported Internship employers, Store Manager Katie believes in equal opportunities. Katie has the vision to see value in everyone. Taking on a young person through the bemix Supported Internship Programme has provided an opportunity for a local young person who really wants to work. 

“It has been a pleasure to have someone on work experience so committed and passionate about the role they are doing. He is a great example that with enough determination, you can overcome the obstacles in the way. He has picked it up quickly and the personal growth has been outstanding. I am very proud of him and proud to have been a part of his development.” Katie, B&M Store Manager in Strood.

bemix Employer Engagement Lead Mark, reflects on Luke’s journey so far: “Luke is a real credit to himself and has approached this placement opportunity with a positive, can-do attitude.  He has overcome a couple of minor obstacles along the way and throughout his time there, he has been shown his commitment and desire to prove his value to Katie and the team. Well done Luke.”

Luke at work at B&M, Strood

Naomi’s internship at Victory Care Home in Chatham

Naomi is currently on placement as a Care Home Assistant at Victory Care Home, in Chatham. The care home provides affordable high-quality residential care for older people with dementia, sensory and physical impairment. Having enjoyed work experience at this care home in 2019, Naomi knew she would love working back there again. 

As part of Naomi’s role, she is involved in cleaning, doing the laundry and keeping things tidy and organised. 

It is important to Naomi that she has independence. Naomi enjoys the tasks she is given to carry out alongside her colleagues, such as the laundry. Within the process, Naomi unloads the clean washing and places it in the dryer. The washing must then be sorted into piles on a trolley, according to which resident each item belongs to. Each pile is then taken to each resident's room and put away. 

In between this, Naomi will also tidy up the resident’s rooms, making sure clothes in the drawers are folded and hung up neatly. Naomi enjoys sitting and chatting with the residents and is not discouraged if they ask her to repeat herself, as some are hard of hearing. Naomi has enjoyed helping with a game of Dominos and has read to one of the residents, too. Naomi cares about helping others - the tasks within this role are suited well to her interests and aspirations. 

When asked how she felt about her job, Naomi said she is "very happy" and her favourite thing is "everything"!

Abbie, Naomi's colleague at Victory Care Home - said she "really liked having Naomi working with her." Other members of the team have said that they miss her when she is not there!

Theresa, Manager at Victory Care Home said “I consider aptitude is what you’re capable of accomplishing but enthusiasm determines whether you will be successful. Naomi’s eagerness and strength of character will help her reach whatever she sets her mind to.”

Naomi at work at Victory Care Home, Chatham

Louise, Naomi's work coach, said, "Naomi has become a valued member of the team through her hard work and commitment to her job role. Naomi gives each task her full attention and does it all with a smile on her face. She handled a difficult situation she encountered early on with real maturity and used the experience to gain extra knowledge. Well done Naomi."

To learn more about Supported Internships, including the business benefits and the programme process, click here