A JOBLESS dad who set up in business with help from a council scheme is now heading up his own security service which looks after top clients.
Former security worker and special constable, Wayne York, aged 38, from Renishaw, is now a bodyguard with multi-millionnaire clients.
The father-of-two had found himself unemployed for three months and was struggling to find the confidence to look for work.
But before losing his job, Wayne had been involved in providing close protection for stars including Jessica Ennis after she won her World Heptathlon title.
“As well as being responsible for her, I even had to carry her umbrella when she attended an event after winning the title!” Wayne said.
Wayne, who lives with partner Rochelle and children Hollie, seven, and Joshua, four, found himself unemployed last year.
He said: “I had a back injury and it really got me down and hit my confidence.
“I couldn’t do the work I had previously and, as a normally active person, not going out to work every morning really hit me. I could feel myself sinking - I knew I needed help to get me out of the rut or it was only going to get worse.”
Wayne’s fortunes changed after being referred to the Working Communities Project run by North East Derbyshire Council.
He said: “For me it was the confidence. But the project leader was absolutely fantastic and made me realise no-one was stopping me but me, I just needed a bit more belief in myself.”
While recovering from his injury, Wayne was encouraged to consider his options for retraining and adding to his existing skills, leading him to take up and complete a teacher training qualification at Chesterfield College.
“I couldn’t believe how well I got on with it, it gave me a real boost to know I could do it. At the same time, I was toying with the idea of setting up my own business, but I hadn’t a clue where to start or even if I had the skills to do it.”
With guidance from the project, Wayne went on to set up his own security and close protection service.
He said: “I’m now working for myself and it’s going really well - I would never had dreamt I would have so many options.
“I hope people who find themselves in a similar situation to me will read my story and find their way to the project – it might just be the boost they need to get themselves back on the right track.”
Wayne, who is tight-lipped about the identity of his private security clients, is also putting the teaching qualification to good use, teaching would-be door supervisors for Pontefract-based training company KP Skills.
In his spare time, Wayne helps coach youngsters in kickboxing - a sport in which he holds a double black belt - at Beighton Miners’ Welfare Club.
* North East Derbyshire Council’s Working Communities Project provides help for unemployed people in the borough from all backgrounds
■ Help includes one-to-one support to find suitable employment
■ There is confidential support to develop a realistic personal plan that will help you get a job
■ Help with the job search, using computers, writing a CV, completing an application form and help to attend an interview
■ Advice on how a job will affect benefits, plus help with tax credits, training needs for a job and travel costs
■ Financial support to cover travel costs, childcare costs and other expenses associated with gaining employment
n Anyone wanting to find out more about the project should call Mark Szadura, Community Employment Advisor, on 01246 217 534