A hub of hope

CAP clients
Pelena Cosme

Digital Content Producer

When Sue asked her husband what he wanted for his birthday, she never expected him to ask her to attend the local job club, nor the impact it would have on both of their lives. 

Imagine you’ve relocated to a new country, leaving behind your home, your family, your friends and your job. As you try to get settled, financial difficulties weigh heavy on your shoulders, and then your family is hit by worsening health issues. You urgently need to increase your income, but finding work seems out of reach. Where would you turn? This is the situation Sue faced.

I first learned about CAP through my husband, Tim, who attended the Guildford Job Club at Millmead in 2020,’ Sue remembers. I had recently relocated to the UK after living abroad. I felt it was the right decision to come to England, Tim’s home country, and raise our son here, but the visa cost way more than we envisioned and money became tighter and tighter. Tim needed support in looking for work, so when he found out that the local church was running a job club, he signed up straight away.

The mock interview sessions and help to write his CV really benefitted him, and he would often tell me how supportive everyone was. He would tell me how, after each session, the coaches, volunteers and other participants would get together in the church’s cafe with a hot drink to pray, talk and get to know each other on a personal level. As Tim described it, the job club was a hub of hope”.’

CAP resources local churches to run job clubs because we recognise the importance of helping people in a practical way, by supporting them to grow in confidence and boost their chances of gaining employment.

Considering that one in ten UK adults currently rely on credit to pay monthly bills, job clubs are just one of the ways we’re striving to help people increase their income and cope better with the high cost of living (YouGov poll commissioned by CAP and carried out in January 2024)

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I was looking after our toddler but always keeping an eye out for future work,’ Sue continues. Money was extremely tight and I didn’t want Tim to bear all of the pressure. I couldn’t help but feel guilty and I noticed that I felt overwhelmed, isolated and afraid of the future. I would brush it aside as best as I could, but then another major challenge came along.

Tim had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) back in 2016, and some time after he finished the job club, his condition took a turn for the worse. He was in an increasing amount of pain and his movement became restricted, so Tim found himself relying on me more and more. The strain of the international move, money worries and ill- health were just too much for me and I didn’t know how to cope. But I knew I needed to be strong, both for Tim and our son.

As Tim’s birthday was approaching, I asked him what he wanted. We couldn’t afford much, but it was important for me to make him feel cherished and appreciated, because he was. His simple request absolutely stunned me: I want you to attend the job club”. He could see how moving away from my family and the loss of a job I loved had caused me to become a shell of myself. I’m normally an extrovert, but I’d become really isolated and my confidence had dropped. I was reluctant to join the job club at first because I wanted to dive straight into a new role and look after my family – I wanted to support Tim with the MS and looking for a job was time-consuming already. But I remembered the hope in Tim’s eyes when he used to return from the sessions and how uplifted he would be if I gave it a go, so I agreed.

But I remembered the hope in Tim’s eyes when he used to return from the sessions and how uplifted he would be if I gave it a go, so I agreed 


I had struggled with finding permanent work in the UK despite my extensive work history, and I ultimately needed a way out of my mounting money worries and anxious state. Jo was my amazing coach at the job club in Guildford. She would constantly remind me that I was qualified and experienced, and that I just needed support in tailoring applications for the UK job market and being confident to apply for flight attendant roles, which is what I’d been doing when we lived in Dubai. With Jo mentoring me and praying with me, I finally felt ready to apply for a dream role with British Airways. I secured an interview and was able to put what I’d practised in my one- to-one sessions with Jo into action. I landed the job just a few weeks after completing the job club course and I’m so grateful. I never expected to go back into the flight industry – I thought flying was over for me, but the job club motivated me to be confident and make the most of my skills. 

Tim and I are now in a better place with our finances and things are heading in a positive direction for us as a family. Tim is managing his MS condition well and our son is growing and bringing us so much joy. Because we got so connected with the people at the job club, and through them praying with us and for us, it impacted us not just practically but spiritually. Being in financial difficulty takes so much from you, but through CAP, the church, coaches and volunteers, God was able to use the job club to remind us that he will never leave us helpless, no matter what challenges life brings our way.’