Changing Lives is celebrating helping over 500 people into employment since our dedicated Employment Service launched in 2010.

Changing Lives has helped over 500 people across the North East and York to take the first steps towards a brighter future by successfully gaining employment.

All of our services across the country incorporate employment guidance and workshops into the support package they offer, and we also have specialist employment programmes to help people access training, education, volunteering, and a career.

Val Chybowski, Changing Lives Employment Service Manager, said:

“We’re over the moon to have helped over 500 people reach their goal of employment since we launched our service in 2010.

Gaining employment is a massive step in someone’s journey, providing them with the skills and ability to build a brighter future for themselves and their family.

Thank you to the corporate organisations who provide a life-changing opportunity to the people we help, simply by taking a chance and offering a two-week placement. Together, we are changing lives.”

We work to empower people to take control of their futures. But we understand that often, people come to us with low self-esteem and no confidence in their abilities, because of past trauma and abuse.

Our Employment Team work holistically to help people based in our other support services to build up the confidence and skills needed to gain employment when they are ready to do so.


Our Employment Team are over the moon to have supported 500 people into employment across the North East and York.

Changing Lives has built up strong relationships with local employers over the three years the service has been running, and has successfully found work placements and permanent employment for people in national organisations such as Greggs, Marks and Spencer, Waitrose, and Barclays.

Sarah* recently received help from our Employment Service, and has now been in employment with a local beauty business for three months. She said:

“I joined LashArt in August 2017 through the help of Changing Lives. They are a fantastic company to work for and the staff here have offered me nothing but support and guidance.

I am so grateful to Changing Lives and LashArt for giving me such a great opportunity to work for an industry that I am so interested in.

I have already attended a beauty event in London and will be attending more events in the future. This opportunity really has changed my life”

Every person Changing Lives supports in the North East and York has a dedicated Employment Coach who can provide practical support such as CV workshops and mock interviews. We are able to provide specialist support for young people and veterans, as well as having Employment Coaches based in our Drug and Alcohol services across North Tyneside, Sunderland and York.

Jane* has also been helped by our Employment Team recently, after graduating from our 12-week recovery programme in York. She was given the opportunity to work with local business Choc Affair as a seasonal temp. Jane said;

“I really enjoyed my time at Choc Affair, the girls there had a fresh approach to working with people in the local community; they give people a second chance and are non-judgemental, something that is very rare.

“Looking to the future, I feel more confident following my work experience. It’s made made me think about what I really want to do as a career, and not to just go in to any job.”

Changing Lives provides two-week work placements through Business in the Community, and continues to support people for up to six months after their work placement

Read more about Sarah’s success with LashArt here.

*names have been changed for anonymity