Stable employment and a new sense of purpose for Manny

E. Smith Service user stories

People who come to use the services of the 999 Club can be at risk of exploitation which often leads to homelessness.  By helping people to acquire or improve their skills and understand more about their rights we can prevent them becoming homeless.

Manny came to the 999 Club in May 2016 needing help with his accommodation.  He sometimes worked sixty-nine hours a week, but was paid erratically, which made paying rent at the hostel where he was staying very difficult.

During his initial assessment, he was identified as a good fit for our employability programme.  Working with our Employment Advice and Support Worker and with the help of one of our Gateway volunteers, he applied to Lewisham College to study an ESOL course to improve his English.  He is already fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.

We helped him to update his CV and supported him through searching for jobs and making applications that were a good fit for his experience in kitchens.

He has now started work as a Night Kitchen Assistant in Central London.  He applied, received a callback, attended training, and signed a contract in an incredibly short space of time. His new employer was eager for him to start work which has given him a real boost in confidence.

‘I don’t want to work cash in hand or anything like that,’ says Mannny, ‘I want to pay my tax, it’s important.’

Regular wages and a job with a responsible employer will help to stabilise Manny’s accommodation needs and we wish him all the best.


After starting his new job, Manny came back to the 999 Club and got his food safety certificate, which resulted in him receiving a payrise from his new employer. He called in to see us in between his busy shifts to say thank you.

Names have been changed for reasons of confidentiality.