At the Big Futures Show 2022

… we were pleased to be part of the Big Futures Show 2022. Many students were keen to test their skills in sorting interview tips and hints. Claverham CC had the speediest student at 10.13 seconds. Well done to all who took part.

A little celebration …

… on Monday 25th April, we started our year of celebrations for our 25th anniversary!

Opening Doors The Jobs Fair

On 29th March, 30 employers and exhibitors set up ‘shop’ at the Eastbourne Town Hall and close to 200 jobseekers attended across the day. There was a real buzz around the exhibition halls and a great deal of engagement between jobseekers, support agencies and employers. We’ve already heard of successful matches between candidates and employers from this event. In the coming weeks, we will be continuing to support clients into work and to support employers in filling their vacancies. We will also continue to build on the new partnerships forged in putting this event together and look forward to progressing and making a difference to the local employment scene.

Newsletter: August 2021

Read our latest news in our NEWSLETTER August 2021

Received with thanks …

Former Mayor of Eastbourne, Councillor Steve Wallis presented us with a cheque for £15,560 from his fundraising events. This was a fantastic amount as he was unable to hold any events during the pandemic. We are truly grateful for this sum which will support our work.

From the Queen’s representative …

We were pleased to receive a visit from Deputy Lieutenant John Smith JP DL. He came with a message of thanks from Her Majesty The Queen for our work in supporting our local community during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

In memory of Mike Leighton …

Mike joined People Matter in July 2009 as volunteer Data Input Officer, a role which suited him down to the ground and eventually lead to him being ‘promoted’ to Data Manager.

Very much a ‘systems and process’ man, Mike was instrumental in the planning and introduction of processes to support the movement and recording of paper records and client data.  Although he dealt with many hundreds of files each year, his filing systems were second to none and meant his colleagues were always able to find what they needed.

Being methodical and organised gave Mike great satisfaction, something he mentioned several times during annual reviews, that, and the pleasure he gained in checking the monthly reconciliations with a fine-toothed comb!

The work wasn’t without its challenges though – mainly caused by having to adapt to changes to systems outside of the charity’s control – but Mike persevered, and it paid off.

Mike will also be remembered for his labelling of our pigeon holes – it must have felt like painting the Forth Road bridge, since almost immediately Mike had re-applied the labels alphabetically to the trays, someone would leave or join and mess up the system. Of course he also tried to cater for those of short stature in making sure their pigeon hole wasn’t at the very top!

A quiet and very private man, Mike nonetheless loved to be included in office lunches and social events.  He enjoyed being part of a Christian organisation and always attended morning prayer meetings and lunches, often assisting with food prep (his other great passion) and clearing away.

Mike had significant health issues during his 10 years of service, but he rarely complained and, remained steadfast in his faith throughout.









Remembering Joyce Ford …

… a much loved and respected former volunteer adviser at People Matter, sadly Joyce died in January 2021. Here are a few facts about and quotes, either about or from Joyce, compiled by Ann (our CEO) and reflecting on Joyce’s time with us at People Matter.

Joyce joined People Matter on the 6th of September 2001 as a Receptionist and typist, typing CVs for clients drafted by the advisers.

From Joyce at her first annual appraisal, “I am happy to help with anything”.

On the 1st of April 2004 she wrote “I would like to learn more about client advising, interview skills and helping with application forms” ….so, she did just that.  She started writing a regular newsletter for colleagues entitled “Joyce’s Jottings” (her idea) about some of the interesting or challenging clients she’d seen and how she had helped them.  At that point she was seeing a minimum of 3 clients a day, whilst training new advisers and helping the management team prepare for accreditation of the service.

A comment from Peter Moore in 2007 “Joyce has given a consistently high standard of IAG (Information, Advice and Guidance) services to over 300 clients to date.  All feedback forms have been positive and affirming of the excellent service given.”.

Never one to stand still and with a keenly enquiring mind, in 2010 Joyce completed Level 3 and Level 4 awards in Advice and Guidance, at the conclusion of which she received a Lifetime Achiever’s Award from the Head of training company who described Joyce as a prime example of someone who had wholeheartedly engaged in ‘later in life’ learning.  That wasn’t her only award though.  She was recognised for her contribution to the community with an Eastbourne Achiever’s Award.  She didn’t let it go to her head though!

During 2010 Joyce helped over 400 clients by writing their CVs and helping them with their job…a fairly average year since she’d started doing advice work in 2007.

During her appraisal in 2012 Peter asked Joyce whether she had any skills, abilities, or interests that she wasn’t already using but would like to use at People Matter.  Joyce’s reply “Not that I’ve yet discovered!”.  He wrote, “Joyce is an excellent and key member of the team.  Her hard work, consistency, reliability and dedication set the standard to everyone else”.

Like many of us, Joyce was sometimes frustrated by malfunctioning IT, bureaucratic paperwork and clients failing to attend pre-arranged appointments….but she was a problem solver and didn’t let anything stand in the way of her being able to help people, supported by tea and ginger biscuits, her quick wit and sense of humour.

Joyce continued volunteering with People Matter until her stroke.

She was a diminutive lady, always neatly turned out (as ladies of a certain age often are) with her hair permed and wearing her pearls.  Her appearance was deceptive though and sometimes gave clients, especially those in their 20s, the idea that she either didn’t have a clue or that she would be a complete pushover.  They very quickly discovered that neither was true!  I vividly remember one occasion (which actually became part of People Matter folklore) standing in Reception in Gildredge Road where 3 clients were waiting to be collected by advisers.  Joyce came into the room and spoke the client’s name. A young woman, duly followed Joyce out of the room, looking her up and down from behind and rolling her eyes in a condescending way as if to say, how on earth can ‘that old lady’ help me?  I remember thinking, just you wait until Joyce has finished with you, and was fortunate to be in Reception again when the session finished to hear the woman effusively thanking Joyce for her help.

Unusually, Joyce directly touched the lives of literally thousands of Eastbourne people – a remarkable legacy for a remarkable woman.

She is and will be fondly remembered by all of us at People Matter.

Newsletter: October 2020

Read our latest news in our NEWSLETTER Oct 2020

With thanks to Hart Reade …

after a year of fund raising, Hart Reade’s senior partner Alexandra Funnell presents our CEO, Ann Gillard with the proceeds from their events and efforts for People Matter as charity of the year.

Shirts to the fore …

further contributions of items for our growing wardrobe of clothes suitable for jobseekers’ interviews. With grateful thanks.

Hotel fire jobs alliance …

Business organisations and community support groups are joining forces to help people whose livelihoods have been put at risk by the devastating Claremont Hotel fire.

In a quickly-assembled alliance, town leaders are working together as a team to support hotel staff and their families, and to try to get them back into work as soon as possible.

At the campaign’s forefront is People Matter, along with the Eastbourne Hospitality Association, the town’s chamber of commerce, the Eastbourne Business Improvement District and Visit Eastbourne – the borough council’s tourism arm.

People whose jobs are affected by the blaze are being urged to make immediate contact with us, either by dropping in at our offices at 6 Saffrons Road (just behind the town hall) or by calling our switchboard on 01323 431289.

Charity chief executive Ann Gillard said: “It was a very sad day losing the Claremont but humbling to see the community come together to help those affected by the fire.

“At People Matter we understand how uncertain the future may seem to some staff. That’s why we are opening our doors with our specialist support to anyone affected.”

Through our qualified and experienced advisers and a specialist Working for You team that actively seeks out opportunities with local employers, we help hundreds of clients back into employment each year.

We have worked on a number of successful job initiatives with the chamber of commerce, whose president Richard Garland said it was also throwing its full weight behind the jobs alliance.

“We know that chamber members will also look to assist where they can and we will be communicating with them shortly,” said Mr Garland.  “We hope that something positive can come out of the horrific destruction and sad loss of this Grade II listed building.”

Eastbourne Hospitality Association’s vice chair, Kristian Hayter, added: “We have reached out to local authorities to create a partnership which will come together to support staff and guests at the Claremont.

“Our main concern now is with the staff. Christmas time is around the corner. Staff will be paid in the short term but one of the things we really want to do is to present them options with local employers.”

Suits and ties …

Many thanks to Jean for her very generous donation of Roy’s suits and ties to help jobseekers with outfits for interviews.

Waitrose Charity of the Month …

we are pleased that Waitrose, Old Town, Eastbourne has chosen People Matter as one of the charities nominated to benefit from their green tokens scheme during November. Please support us by shopping and posting your token for People Matter. The more tokens, the bigger donation we’ll receive …

Charity of the Year

Our team were delighted to be awarded joint winners (with Eastbourne Foodbank) in the Charity of the Year category.

Funds gratefully received

… many thanks to the Rotary Club of Eastbourne for their kind donation to our funds. Cheque presented to Ray Dadswell by President Christine Haniver and Past President David Garlick.

On the move …

After over 20 years at 17 Gildredge Road, we are moving. We will be closed at Gildredge Road 24th-28th June as we pack up and move. From 2nd July our main office will be at 6 Saffrons Road, Eastbourne BN21 1DG (round the corner from the Eastbourne Town Hall). Our telephone number remains the same: 01323 431289 Our reception email remains the same: We will continue to run the same range of services (although there may be minor disruption while we settle in to our new premises). We look forward to continuing to support jobseekers with all aspects of job searching, training and career development from our new home.

Pleased to be chosen…

Congratulations to Councillor Steve Wallis on being chosen as Eastbourne’s Mayor for the coming year. We are delighted that Steve has chosen People Matter to be his chosen charity for his mayoral year.

Quizzers extraordinaire …

congratulations to Plummer Parsons for winning the fundraising quiz on 22 May! The event raised a total of £160 for People Matter – thank you to Harte Read for organising, for Cru restaurant for hosting and to everyone who attended

Florists in the making …

many thanks to The Bloom Factory for hosting this fundraising event. Looks like everyone had a ‘bloomin’ good time and raised much needed funds.

Breaking news …

we’ve got it …….. Matrix accreditation for another 3 years, for the information, advice and guidance we give through the National Careers Service contract

We’re very grateful …

to Eastbourne Rotary for their fundraising. President David Garlick presented a cheque for £425.oo to Ann our CEO.

‘Community Spirit’ recognised …

… we are pleased to have received the Business Women Excellence Award 2018 recognising our work helping jobseekers

Waitrose Green Token Scheme …

… we are delighted that just over £500 was raised for our funds. Many thanks to Waitrose and to all the shoppers who supported us.

And finalists …

… we have been selected as one of the 2018 Business Women Excellence Awards – Sussex Edition finalists in the Community Spirits Award category

Celebrating another award …

We are delighted to have won the category for Training and Development at the Eastbourne Business Awards 2018.

Thanks to everyone who supported us – we’ll keep working hard to provide information, advice and guidance to local jobseekers.

Client Forum …

On 26 October, we held our most recent Client Forum. Several clients enjoyed tea and cake and shared their experiences of using our services. They also gave some helpful suggestions for improvements which we will consider. As an organisation we value feedback because it helps us to examine and evaluate our practice.

Green Token Scheme …

we are pleased that Waitrose, Old Town, Eastbourne has chosen People Matter as one of the charities nominated to benefit from this scheme during November. Please support us by shopping and posting your token for People Matter. The more tokens, the bigger donation we’ll receive …

Going it alone

… a beginner’s guide to starting your own business. Written by Jane Bwye our Client Adviser,  specialisist in providing advice and support to jobseekers thinking about starting their own business. Copies of this step-by-step guide are available from our office and with proceeds from sales supporting People Matter.

and the winner was …

our very own CEO – Ann Gillard, Mentor of the Year 2018, East Sussex Women in Business Awards

Congratulations and thanks for all you do … from all at People Matter

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The People Matter Trust Ltd is a Registered Charity No: 1062467 and is a Company Limited by Guarantee. Registered in England and Wales No: 03360047.

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