Tesco gives jobs to 120 long-term unemployed at new Sunderland store

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MORE than 120 people out of work for more than six months are celebrating securing jobs at Tesco’s new Sunderland store.

They have passed an eight-week training course in retail and customer relations skills, which guarantees them a job at the Sunderland Retail Park site, which opens on June 24.

They received certificates to mark their success a from Sunderland Central MP Julie Elliott, at a ceremony in Sunderland Software Centre.

The trainees were picked from 800 initial applicants

After 13 years without a job, Carol Stacey feared she would never work again.

“To get this opportunity with Tesco, honestly I can’t believe it,” said the 55-year-old, from Witherwack.

“I keep thinking I will wake up in the morning and it will all have been a dream. I’ve had that many knock-backs, my kids can’t believe that their mam has got a job and I’m going back to work.”

Billy Joe Storey, 29, from Hendon, said the opportunity offers him the chance to relaunch his career after redundancy. “Finding another job was so hard because there were so many people at every interview, with 50 or 60 people going for every job,” he said.

But with the support of his Job Centreplus adviser, Billy Joe built his confidence back up to the point where he seized the job opportunity with both hands.

He said: “They got me an appointment at the council offices with Tesco, and I knew that job was mine.”