A young man who came to the UK as a refugee from Ukraine has found a stable home and job in Aberystwyth after receiving support by Ceredigion’s Communities for Work+ team, which is funded by Welsh Government.

To mark Refugee Week, which is being held between 19 and 25 June, this is Andrii Llnitskiy story.

Andrii, who is 22 years old, came to Aberystwyth as a refugee and now lives with a local family.

Before moving to the UK, he did some general handyman jobs, which he really enjoyed.

In January 2023, he made contact with the Ceredigion Communities for Work+ team and received support to apply for jobs in his new home.

Members of the Communities for Work+ team met with him to discuss his aspirations and needs and it became clear that he was extremely focused on getting a job and was open to suggestions.

However, language was a barrier as he was still learning English. He received support to apply for a cleaning role with Marks & Spencer, and he is now working 18 hours a week at the Aberystwyth store.

Misha Homayoun-Fekri, a Ceredigion Communities for Work+ mentor, helped Andrii.

She said: “It was clear to me that he would do just about any job, and he attended every appointment that we made, including responding to texts and emails.

“When meeting with Andrii, we did regular job searches. I supported Andrii to create a CV and supported him with job applications.

“I tried to think outside the box and think of work options which would be empathetic to the language barriers and employers who would take on refugees.

“As Andrii’s first job in the UK, I am really pleased for him. If he can stick at it whilst continuing to learn, he could progress in time. This way he can make friends and practise his language skills with other staff members, thus increasing his confidence and wellbeing, especially being new to the UK.”

Reflecting on his experience, Andrii said: “Thank you for helping me get a good job in another country. I am satisfied, the conditions are really excellent.”

Cllr Bryan Davies, who is the leader of Ceredigion County Council and Cabinet member with responsibility for learning and development and refugee resettlement, said: “As we mark Refugee Week between 19 and 25 June, this is once again another inspiring story.

“I would like to sincerely congratulate Andrii on his efforts and his new role. This is a brilliant example of the support available through the Communities for Work+ scheme.

“I would encourage anyone who is in need of employability support to reach out for help and advice from this excellent team.”

The Communities for Work+ scheme is funded by Welsh Government and offers training, qualifications, volunteering placements, paid work experience opportunities and a personal mentoring service to help people into employment.

To find out more about the services provided in Ceredigion, visit the Ceredigion Employability Support website.