Welcome to DoleLife.com

Hello and Welcome to DoleLife.com!

DoleLife is a spin-off from the original Avanta Files blog, after your 2 years on the Government Work Programme is ended, you head back to the Job Centre, this is my experience of Life After the Work Programme.

Posts will be erratic, as I can only post after major appointments and/or courses.

You can get the latests DoleLife.com news by following @DoleLife_AF on Twitter, or general ramblings and upcoming appointments by following @DancingBeaver on Twitter.

Making a Decision: The Sanction Story Part 3

Since when have the sanctions been 4 weeks? 2 weeks doubt and 2 week sanction? Honestly, its news to me.

But yeah, 4 weeks with no money, put in for hardship, that I wont get for 2 weeks, IF I get anything.

I should also be getting a phone call sometime after 4pm about the reconsideration, I asked for after 4pm so I’m not being interrupted during maths as you can be on the phone for 15mins or more, or the call could come within 48 hours, whatever they feel like.

I also need to make an appointment at the doctors, unfortunately it requires a phone call, no time to do that right now because as soon as I hit Post and tweet this post, I have to run to maths (via Greggs for a coffee).

So, yeah…

Making a Decision: The Sanction Story Part 2.5

Not long back from the Job Centre, got forms to put in for Hardship and an appointment for it tomorrow before Maths.

The [badly photocopied] bit of paper I was given on Friday about the appeals process was out of date, I need to do a ‘Reconsideration’ thing tomorrow, and I really need to think what I’m going to write on it.

I am fighting it, I might not be wired right but I’m not someone who lays back and takes it.

I’ll update tomorrow (after Maths) with the results of the Hardship thing and then again with the results of the ‘Reconsideration’

Making a Decision: The Sanction Story Part 2

Looks like they have sanctioned me, first indication (other than the advisor saying it) was getting a Reclaim form in the post.

Remember when I said I was going to fight it… I’m heading out to the Job Centre shortly to get the Appeal form and actually talk to someone about the whole thing.

I’ll do another post when I get back.

Making a Decision: The Sanction Story Part 1

The time I knew was coming has arrived, my advisor has sent my claim off to the decision maker, the advisor who obviously gives no fucks about my circumstances, doesn’t understand what its like to live with the anxiety’s I live with and doesn’t understand the words “Vulnerable Customer” (their words, not mine).

Its not like I haven’t all ready taken 2 massive steps, Maths and Business Admin L1 (more about that soon).

But, finding the same jobs over and over and over again and jobs I can’t do without having the qualifications I’m working towards, jobs that take me outside the 90 minute area and outside my comfort zone seems to be enough for my advisor to send everything off to a decision maker.

I want a job, I want to be able to afford to upgrade my computer, to buy a new desk and other things without having to worry. But I have to live with what I have and taking too many steps at once just sends me into a spin.

If I’m sanctioned, I’m going to fight it, I don’t back down, I WON’T back down.

And finally, the Business Admin Update: Its a Mandatory Course, even if you put your own name down for it. My advisor says to drop maths because I have to attend – Screw that, I’ll get that sorted soon.

Administrative Business: Phase 2

Well, from something good to something, not so good. Someone, most likely my Advisor, screwed up somewhere.

Instead of volunteering for the Business Admin Course, I have been ‘mandated’ onto it, meaning, I might have to drop, the all ready halfway through, Maths course I’m doing.

Now, bare in mind, I’m doing Business Admin for the bit of paper to say I can do it, because I can, Maths, I’m doing to get better at Maths.

Luckily, the place I’m doing Business Admin with understands why I’m doing Maths and they have contacted the area manager (who was in a meeting while I was there) about taking the Wednesdays off for Maths, they will be emailing me the results of that, but at the same time, I need to talk to my Maths Teacher and my Job Centre Advisor about what has happened.

Maths to say I might miss some lessons
Advisor to ask why it was Mandated

Anyway, enough of that rant. Today was just an assessment of Maths and English, both of which I came out at Level 1, and I wasn’t even trying, skipped half the questions I didn’t really care about.

No idea when I start, I think its some time in February.

Administrative Business

Today’s appointment was just to check if I was doing enough to look for a job, apparently, even with doing a Maths Course, I’m not.

Then I pulled out a Trump Card I’ve been holding onto for a while, it was mainly for after I finished Maths but playing it early works because I may do GCSE Maths after this Level 2 course.

I heard on the grapevine that the Job Centre funded a Business Admin course, every other time I have asked I have been told, in no uncerten terms, that they don’t, until today. Because my Advisor (Job Coach), had never heard of this course being offered, he had a look… and found it.

He phoned them up, put my name down and I have an assessment on Monday for it.

What makes things funky is, I’m the first and so far, only, person to sign up to this course, but we will see what happens after the assessment.

Everything Changes: Phase 2

I had my first signing on the new system today, which turned into a [quick] appointment. My ‘Claimant Commitment’ was slightly changed, to:
1) Add more clarity about the UJ thing, the pre set options have nothing about not having a UJ account
2) Change the ‘Ask Family, Friends and Former Colleagues’ from Weekly to Daily…. That’s kinda impossible for me.

It also turns out I was filling out the new job book wrong, I was under the impression that, along with what you have done, you add the jobs you apply for into it too… You don’t, its another bit of paper and along with that, I have to write down my daily routine for job search – eg. Monday, 12:30pm, Accessed UJ and found X Jobs. for a week. Not sure if this is an official thing, but my ‘Job Coach’ (still a stupid name) is making me do it.

The whole thing freaked me out, if the rest of my signings and appointments are like this, I’ll end up a nervous wreck, but not as much as I probably would if I didn’t have this blog.

Speaking of appointments, my next one is on the 16th of January (a week from today), will probably have another post for that one too.

Everything Changes

All good things must come to an end, my time with the ESA side of the Job Centre has ended, all because of the new system, the Universal Credit System, is coming in after the new year, 1st Centre in the North East to do it.

So. I’ve been moved back to JSA, got one of the new Work Plan books and a new ‘Claimant Commitment’, since it was done with my ESA Advisor (or Coach, as they are now called), its been tailored towards my Anxiety/Social Anxiety. Not that it will stop the JSA Advisor/Coach from ignoring it all and throwing me into the first job they see and then giving me a sanction because its not suitable.

I’ve also said that I wont drop my Maths Course for anything (Small Note: I passed the Level 1, I’m now doing Level 2).

With everything changing, there might be more updates to this blog than previously.

Its an Update!

Oh wow, its been ages since I posted here. Things have been going so smoothly that I haven’t had anything really to post.

First up, Maths.
The course has nearly finished, should be doing the Level 1 exam at the beginning of June, that will be confirmed next Tuesday. I think I learnt somethings, well, I know I did, its the remembering that’s the problem.

Next up is Mind.
That has completely finished, although if I have any problems or worries, I can shoot off an email and get any help I need.

Then we have the Job Centre.
Thats going as normal, well, as normal as it can get. Still actively looking for a job, infact I have a CV [modification to suit the job] and Covering letter in the works for one.

Lastly, a new version of my CV… Sort of.
I’ve been working on getting myself out there a little more, its slightly unusual, I’m working on a website to advertise myself. At the time of this post, the site is far from finished, it has the technical’s done, it has at least half the content, but its missing one thing, and I cant launch without it, right now, its just a grey page with coming soon written on it. The site is DancingBeaver.net, naturally.

That’s about it really, if anything major happens, or by some miracle, I pass Maths, I’ll post again.

The All New System

Its an all new system at the Job Centre in Hartlepool, no longer do you tell the front desk your name and go to where you need to be.

You now… Tell them your name, get a little coloured card then go to where you need to be. If you have your appointment letter (or, as I found out talking to my advisor, your book), then you don’t need a little bit of card, the security guards now do next to nothing.

Its a tiny, insignificant thing, but its just another level of bureaucracy in an already bureaucratic hell hole.

As for the appointment, it was just to check how I’m doing with the various things I’m doing right now, and to sign on.

%d bloggers like this: