Step into Work helps Nick star for hospital services team

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A Prestatyn man has become an invaluable part of Glan Clwyd Hospital’s services team after accessing support through a return to work programme.

Nick Selway, who lost his right arm in a workplace accident 16-years-ago, is back in work after going through Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board’s Step Into Work programme.

The Step Into Work programme provides opportunities for people who face challenges accessing the job market.

The programme provides short-term work placements within the NHS in North Wales, while also supporting careers development and training opportunities.

Nick, 49, was injured after a steel sheet fell on him while working in a recycling plant 16 years ago. Though he managed to avoid more serious injury by diving out of the way of the falling metal, he sustained a severe injury to his right arm which had to be amputated.

Since then, he struggled to find full time work, often not even being able to secure an interview where he could demonstrate his value.

But after seeking support from an Occupational Therapist at his GP surgery, Healthy Prestatyn Iach, Nick accessed training and an opportunity to return to employment with the Health Board as Domestic Assistant.

Nick said: “I think one of my biggest flaws is I don’t like to ask for help – I’ve always felt I can do things myself and achieve on my own.

“I was out of work for so long though that I eventually went to my GP and spoke about how I need some support.

“An Occupational Therapist there told me about opportunities to get new qualifications and training, and after taking up an ILM Course at Deeside College, I was told about Step Into Work.”

Nick, who now uses a prosthetic arm, has now been a part of the hospital’s hotel services team for two months.

His work includes overseeing Glan Clwyd Hospital’s stores, where supplies and medical equipment is kept ready for use on wards and in clinics. He also carries out domestic duties throughout the hospital, working as part of a team of 120 staff who help tackle infections and keep the hospital clean.

Nick said: “I’ve been made to feel really welcome here, and really enjoy my work. It’s great to feel like you’re making a contribution to the care patients are receiving at Glan Clwyd Hospital.

“All I needed was an opportunity to show what I can do, and Step Into Work helped me do that.

“I can’t recommend the way I got here enough. Anybody who has difficult circumstances or hasn’t had a chance to get into work should look to do what I did, because getting that chance to show what you’re about makes all the difference.”

Greg Bloor, Hotel Services Manager for the Central Area, said: “We’ve been so impressed with Nick since he joined – he’s got an incredible attitude.

“Nick made a real impression while on the Step Into Work programme, and we really didn’t want to lose him when that work placement finished.

“He’s a great example of how Step Into Work can provide opportunities for people to showcase their talents and who they are, and help employers look beyond a CV.”

Since 2014, Step Into Work has helped 362 people access short-term work placements to help boost their careers experience, develop new skills and improve their CVs.

From those 362 people, 121 have gone on to find full employment with the Health Board.