Time to take a New Direction

Damian writes a regular column in the Petersfield Post, and the talks in this latest one about the New Directions event coming up in October:

"September often signals an important time of change, as a new academic year begins and we head towards the seasonal shift of autumn. It’s often a time when people start new jobs or consider moving jobs, but it’s also a chance to reflect on where we’re heading and how we use our time.     

With that in mind, I’m delighted to be hosting New Directions again this year; a free one-day event that brings together employment, training and volunteering opportunities for the over 50s. 

Older workers have so much to offer organisations, whether in paid employment or indeed in a voluntary capacity. Their life experience often brings knowledge and skills that are highly valued by employers, and much needed within the voluntary sector. And it’s these capabilities that the New Directions event aims to shine a spotlight on.

The prospect of job hunting or finding a training course can be quite daunting for someone returning to the job market after a gap or a long term role. There may also be a need to find ways to work more flexibly, fitting around other commitments that have become a priority.

Having the confidence to seek out the right opportunities or advice is often key, and New Directions is all about helping people finds ways to put their skills to work in a new direction.

With up to 50 exhibitors - including local employers, charities and a number of companies offering training services - the event enables people to meet and talk with a wide range of local organisations in an informal and relaxed way.

And running in parallel to the exhibition will be a series of inspiring talks and workshops.

Google will be leading sessions on how to manage your presence online and how to navigate the new world of digital recruitment – putting a CV together, where to find the right opportunities and how to develop networks  - all skills that younger people are often very familiar with.  

Nat West will be running a workshop on scam prevention, helping you understand the latest risks and how best to protect yourself against the efforts of fraudsters.

The RHL charity will once again be offering free health checks; a very popular feature of last year’s event, and the Alton branch of the WI will be back to run the café, providing a range of refreshments for visitors and raising funds for local charities through their efforts.  

One of the most memorable aspects of last year was the number of people who stayed for a few hours, visiting the stands, joining some of the talks and then meeting others over a cup of tea in the café. This was local networking at its best.

Although aimed at those over 50, the event is open to anyone who has an interest in seeking out a new direction, and I look forward to welcoming everyone on the day.  

New Directions will be at Alton College, between 11am and 4pm, on Friday 26th October.

More information is available at www.newdirections2018.eventbrite.co.uk, where there is also the opportunity to register in advance."


Article written by Damian Hinds and published in the Petersfield Post on Wednesday 12th September