I’ve been on benefits for over a year now. Well, this time around anyway. I have basically spent most of my life battling mental illness. This time around was the worst it’s ever been, but as a result of many years of being mental, I have GCSEs and a job history consisting of a handful of name tag gigs that lasted a maximum of 6 months each, with massive gaps of unemployment in between. And considering how bad my mobility issues have gotten, there’s no way I can go back to standing all day at a cash register.
Now I’m at the best I’ve ever been. I feel motivated, and I’m ready to start living. There’s one major barrier to me getting my life where I want it, and that’s my lack of qualifications. I found a Pitman Training course to become a legal secretary. With that, I can get work in a legal environment, enabling me to start a CILEx course, eventually becoming an actual lawyer. I’m aiming to specialise in employment law and family law, so I can help the kinds of people who’ve been hurt by the end of legal aid. People like me.
However, the course is expensive. Over £300 per module expensive. It looks like I’ll need to do a minimum of three modules, at <14hrs a week so I don’t lose my benefits. On my restricted income, it’ll take me months to even save up for one module. I managed to save up £70 over several months and I’ve already had to dip into it and owe myself.
The government, despite it’s grandstanding about people like me being workshy spongers, will not fund the course, instead preferring to fund “cv skills” and other such nonsense through the Job Centre. The Princes Trust have no money, despite the Prince himself being minted. And the other charities that would be willing to help have all told me that they can’t because of Government funding cuts.
So yes, I’m crowd funding it. It’s my only option. My lovely boyfriend has offered to help out as best he can, but he’s not exactly swimming in cash either and as we’re both saving up for a deposit so we can live together and I can have something other than a one room dank pit, I’d rather not take his bonus and tax rebate from him.
So, if you’re willing to help me get into work either out of the kindness of your heart or because you’re the kind of person who hates tax money going to the unemployed or disabled, now’s your chance. Even £1 would help. So please consider helping out, or sharing this with your (hopefully minted) friends.