Making a Difference Programme

Supporting you into employment

The Making a Difference programme is designed to offer practical help and advice to get you back where you want to be: working and earning.

Whether you have been on a career break, made redundant, or are trying to enter the job market for the first time, our highly skilled team of employment experts can help you find your way back to work.

We work with you in one-to-one appointments to help you achieve specific career goals, or provide support if you are unsure where to start - this could increase your chances of finding employment or the right direction for you. We adapt our appointments to fit your needs, depending on how you would like us to support you.

All sessions in the programme are free of charge, and we have a flexible fund available to help single parents cover childcare costs during the programme. Please contact us for more details.

How it works

Because no two people are the same, the Making a Difference programme is built around each person's specific back-to-work or training needs.

Our skilled Employment Coaches use coaching techniques to find out your unique back-to-work goals. They then work with you on a one-to-one basis, providing information, advice and guidance and a tailored action plan specifically designed to help you achieve these goals. 

Your regular appointments with your Employment Coach will cover the areas you need to help you achieve your goals, for example interview practice or investigating training courses.

Step-by-step guide

What's involved

During our appointments with you, we may cover the following areas:

We can offer in-depth advice to help you overcome interview nerves.

Our Employment Coaches are skilled in practicing competency questions and can give you all the latest interview tips, including how to do well in virtual interviews. 

If you would like some interview role play to try to practice before the big day, then our Employment Coaches can help with that too.

Some of the most positive feedback that we get from people who have been on the programme is that our help has really made an incredible impact on their interviews, with some saying they would not have been offered the job without our interview help.


We can help you find the best places to look for the jobs you are interested in, including social media, jobs boards and direct application routes.

We can also advise you on how to use LinkedIn for networking and gaining background knowledge of different companies.

We will provide you with up-to-date labour market information that will help you to understand local growth areas and how you could use these insights as you seek opportunities.

Does your CV have all the correct keywords to get you to the top of the applications pile?

Have you got a profile that tells recruiters who you are and where you want to be?

Is your CV formatted to be able to get past an Applicant Tracking System?

Are you including the most looked-for skills in your CV?

We can help you in all these areas they are critical to get you in front of the people who are hiring.

We work with a variety of local businesses to enable participants to gain experience in the workplace. 

This experience could take the form of opportunities like job tasters, work experience, mock interview practice and more.

We also regularly run events with employers who provide information on possible career paths into their industry.

If you are thinking about changing career, our team can help introduce you to a new job market and source employers willing to offer job tasters or visits to their premises to find out more. 


If you would like to change your career but are unsure how to start, or need to update your skillset, we can help.

We can help find the appropriate training course for you, whether you would like to resit your GCSE maths or would like a new career in the NHS.

We have many links with local training providers and local colleges, many of whom provide free courses. Depending on what level of training you would like to undertake, you may also be able to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to help you get to where you want to be.

If you would like to find out more about the Making a Difference programme, or have queries not covered here, please do get in touch with the team and we will be happy to help.

Contact us

Our locations

The Making a Difference programme runs in the Coast to Capital region in the South East, the Leeds City Region and the North East of England.

Towns and cities covered in the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) region include Bognor Regis, Brighton, Burgess Hill, Chichester, Crawley, Croydon, Haywards Heath, Horsham, Lewes, Littlehampton, Newhaven and Worthing. Contact the South team on 01329 559177.

Towns and cities covered in the North East LEP region include Alnwick, Barnard Castle, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Bishop Auckland, Durham, Gateshead, Hexham, Newcastle, North Shields, Peterlee, Sedgefield, South Shields, Sunderland and Whitley Bay. Contact the North East team on 0191 933 7071.

Towns and Cities covered in the Leeds City Region LEP include  Bradford, Castleford, Dewsbury, Halifax, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Leeds, Pontefract, Ripon, Selby, Skipton, Wakefield, Wetherby and York. Contact the Leeds City Region team on 0113 322 5113.

How do referrals work?

You can join the Making a Difference programme through a National Careers Service Adviser, Job Centre Plus Adviser, a charity or by contacting us directly.

You must be aged 18+ unemployed and resident in the Coast to Capital LEP region or North East LEP region in order to join us on the programme.

If you think this programme sounds right for you, but you do not have access to any of these routes, you can also self-refer. To do so, please use the contact us form and we will get back to you.

If you work for a Job Centre or charity and think the Making a Difference programme would suit your clients, please get in touch to find out more. There is a quick and easy way for your clients to join us – please contact us for full details.

About us

The Making a Difference programme is a match-funded European Social Fund programme delivered by Education Development Trust, designed to help thousands of people get job-search ready or into paid employment.

Our team consists predominantly of Employer Engagement Managers and Employment Coaches who provide information, advice and guidance to help participants make the best decisions for themselves. All of our Employment Coaches are qualified or studying to qualify as Level Four Information, Advice and Guidance practitioners and are members of the Institute of Employability Professionals.

To find out more about the team, you can access interviews with an Employer Engagement Manager and Employment Coach, by clicking here. 

Education Development Trust is an international not-for-profit organisation working to improve education outcomes around the world. We combine global research and our longstanding expertise with regional knowledge to inform education policy and practice and deliver programmes around the world. Through our work and expertise – which spans from early years education right through to post-school careers – we seek to strengthen education systems, transform teaching and learning, ensure effective transitions into work, and contribute to global responses to key education challenges.

To find out more about Education Development Trust and its work, please click here.

Read some of our most Frequently Asked Questions here