Sova STRIVE (Support and Transition Routes into Volunteering and Employment) in Hertfordshire’s main aim is to engage people with complex barriers to employment, who may have been through previous unsuccessful interventions to support them into sustained employment, volunteering or education.

STRIVE is a project run by Hertfordshire County Council and 20 partner organisations to tackle poverty and promote social inclusion. It is part of the Building Better Opportunities in Hertfordshire project, funded by the Big Lottery and European Social Fund.

The STRIVE project  aims to support adults facing significant barriers to the workplace, to improve their employability and help them to enter volunteering and work.

We are helping people, aged 19+, who are registered unemployed, claiming unemployment benefits or are economically inactive. Participants may also be facing additional barriers:- disabilities, learning difficulties, social, emotional and mental health issues. They may be homeless or have a housing needs, be lone parents, ex-offenders, migrant workers, come from a Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) background, be coping with addictions, caring for someone, be aged 50+, or have little or no skills or qualifications. We also support those who are working but who are on a low income.

Participants in the programme are matched with a Case Officer who will work closely with them to help progress at a pace and in a way that best suites them. The project offers one-to-one mentoring support to help the participant prepare for volunteering, work experience and explore their training & job options. The support provided is tailored to the participant’s own interests and needs, helping them to move into sustainable employment, volunteering, education or training.

We deliver a variety of activities weekly at Hubs located throughout the county, creating a safe space for participants to attend and engage in a wide range of subjects and activities that can help them to address their barriers, improve their confidence and access the support and help they need to eventually move into volunteering or employment. Engagement activities can be ran on both a one-to-one or group basis. Different organisations are brought together into one place so that participants can be signposted to them and have an informal chat with other support agencies, building up a wider support network for themselves.

It’s been brilliant! I’m more confident and it’s helped me get work.


This project is funded by: