YOUNG & JOBLESS, MONTH 3: CRAIG'S THOUGHTS

It’s been a month since my last blog and it seems like yesterday. So much has happened within the last 4 weeks

Soon after the last live broadcast I travelled down to London to see Wayne Euston-Moore at Adrem, who are a creative career consultancy designed specifically for architecture, design and the digital industries. We sat down in a really cool minimalistic meeting room,   which had floor to ceiling glass panes which doubled as doors. I had almost 2 hours of his time and I didn't feel rushed, we spent time discussing each element of my CV and folio. There was a huge improvement from the first attempt but I still had a lot of work to do on it.   We also talked about what direction I should take and he suggested to head towards being an editorial designer, this would be working for a magazine and designing the layout. This is definitely a position I would love to have! There are way too many things to list that we talked about as I took so much from the meeting. Not just information and facts but confidence. I can’t thank him enough as his advice was invaluable.Two men stood in front of a sign

That same day I spent hunting around London for rooms to rent. j-me original design, based in London, had offered me some work experience with them earlier that week via my mentor Richard Joseph. I was feeling confident and thought what the heck I’ve got nothing to lose. I couldn't refuse this opportunity so signed a contract for a room that night. I moved in a week later...   I’m now in my second week of being a resident of London, it’s been tougher than I thought if I am going to be honest. Everything is different from Manchester, I think northerners are a little bit more chilled. It’s weird because I never thought it was possible to be lonely in a huge city like London but you could walk past a thousand people down here and not one will speak. They’re all going in their own direction and they don't say sorry if they bump into you. It’s like you don't exist sometimes but I am quickly learning how things are done down here. 'Don't txt and walk at peak times' 'Don't take things to heart' 'Squeeze on that tube because the next ones just as full' 'Get an Oyster card' 'Purchase a tube app' 'use google maps for everything'.

 I now have a completed 30 page CV and folio, found myself some unpaid work with a new magazine, 'Oath' to be launched next month, met up with Sarah Farrari who runs Spindle Magazine and had advice and tips from her. I’m trying to network like crazy but it’s hard when you have no money to go anywhere. As soon as I get some spare cash I need to print some business cards. I still have a mountain to climb but for once in my life I have some direction and I am feeling confident in my abilities as a designer.

 In between moving to London and learning the southern ways I had the opportunity to go back to Manchester and meet Javi who is a Spanish lad that has moved to my home city to try and find work as a teacher. We spoke about the economy in Spain, their new government and reforms and the effect it’s having on the people. This was a huge eye opener for me. I had seen vague reports on the news about Spain but I didn't know they had a 24% unemployment rate and things are getting worse for them. It sounded like they were having the same problems as us in England but theirs seems to be on a much larger scale. It was nice to hear that the Spanish help each other out and they are very family orientated and hard times like we are in has made those ties and morals even stronger. The time I spent with Javi was a huge eye opener, I questioned, is this what's to come for us in the UK?

Who can tell what the future holds but I think more needs to be done by our Governments. We need to look at places like Holland and look at why they have a low unemployment rate. We need to stop experimenting with ways to get the economy going again and learn lessons from those that are working. We need to manufacture more products within the UK instead of importing them. We as consumers need to fully understand the consequences of our buying actions. Banks need to be tightly regulated so that this can never happen again. I can’t understand how the government can get away with squandering our money away? How can a group of people take money from us to run our country and then get us into debt? I don't remember signing for a loan? Do you? We all need to educate ourselves more on how our country is run. We need to fully understand where and why our paid taxes are being spent. We also need to take a greater interest on our monetary system, how money is made and circulated. It’s a crying shame that tomorrows generation are being born into a debt riddled society. It’s nothing more than modern day slavery. Each and every one of us is responsible for the state of our economy. It’s easy to blame someone or something but if we collectively educated ourselves and took responsibility for our actions we could empower a better future.

 I have learned a lot within the past few months and I am determined to use this opportunity to the full. Who knows where ill be in another 3 months but I have my confidence back and I am keeping myself upbeat and optimistic about my future. I've come so far but still have a long way to go and I wouldn't be at this point without the help of Vic Turnbull and the team at NoiseFestival.com and Jo Meek from Wise Buddah. Thank you. x  

This is a guest post from Craig who took part in the "NOISE Young & Jobless" radio documentary series, broadcast over 4 months on BBC 5 LIVE in 2012. The programme followed four unemployed young people as they looked for work, hooking them up with mentors and advice on their journey. For more information about this project, the participants and mentors --see here