Bob Cooper, aged 61, felt too old when faced with employers who were more keen to take on younger people.

But after being out of work for two years he felt the programme was a good way to get back into the labour market and re-learn skills, boost confidence and communication.

With renewed optimism, he trained in plumbing and central heating after hearing about the EOF scheme through the Skills Centre. He was given a referral but was unsure about the assessment day and what would occur.

However grew in confidence and got a better feeling about the opportunity. He said he had not had a positive recruitment experience like this before.

Bob is now part of the Estates Services Team within Incommunities. He has highlighted the specific knowledge he has needed to gain in order to excel in this position, including communication with customers, practical skills, understanding clients and developing rapport, and working as a team.

Recognising that this may not guarantee full-time work, Bob said he believed the programme has helped to restore his confidence and pride.