19 March 2019
A Birmingham-based charity which helps unemployed people prepare for job interviews has been boosted by a personal donation from Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce chief executive Paul Faulkner.
Paul met with Suited for Success’ chief executive Patricia White to discuss how the charity helps unemployed individuals by providing them with suits and smart clothing for interviews.
Mr Faulkner donated some suits that were owned by his father, former newspaper chief David Faulkner, who passed away last year.
As well as supplying businesswear, Suited for Success also provides interview coaching, CV reviews and mock interviews – all free of charge.
The charity works in partnership with a number of corporate businesses and professionals - from firms including Gowling WLG, LM-JV, the National Grid and KPMG – who volunteer their time to provide interview coaching and advice.
Suited for Success works on a referral and appointment basis, where clients are referred through job clubs, community projects and employment programmes.
All clients are required to have proof of a guaranteed job interview.
The charity works with unemployed men and women of all ages and backgrounds which have faced barriers or issues gaining employment.
Those who use Suited for Success include ex-offenders, ex-forces, back to work mums, homeless individuals and those recovering from substance misuse.
Currently, Suited for Success sees between 50 and 60 people a week.
Suited for Success was originally a six month corporate social responsibility pilot project launched by young professionals from Gowling WLG, PwC and Lloyds Banking Group.
After the pilot project ended, Suited for Success became a registered charity and Patricia White took over.
Ms White made a career change after 10 years as a journalist in the West Midlands.
Since leaving the BBC, Ms White has worked for a number of charities and community organisations in Birmingham including Thrive Together, Birmingham City Church’s foodbank and its community outreach service, and the Jericho Foundation before joining Suited for Success as its chief executive.
Ms White said: "Suited for Success is really grateful for the support from Birmingham's business community through clothing donations and CSR volunteering to support the city's unemployed men and women to make that first impression count in a job interview.
"As a new member of the GBCC, we are really looking forward to continuing working with our city's vibrant business sector to tackle unemployment."
Mr Faulkner said: “It was really inspiring to meet and discuss with Patricia about all the work Suited for Success is doing in Birmingham.
“Before meeting Patricia, I initially heard about their work in the community and wanted to provide some sort of donation.
“After speaking with my brother and mother about the charity, I was delighted that I was able to donate some of my father’s suits and shirts to this worthy, local cause.
“Their service provides a tangible benefit to those seeking employment opportunities in Birmingham, and is ultimately making a real difference to the lives of those who have faced difficulties in gaining employment.”
To donate or find out more about Suited for Success, visit https://www.suitedforsuccess.co.uk/
Pictured: Paul (left) and Patricia with the donations.