A pensioner so desperate for job he pinned notes on cars saying he’d ‘try anything’ has been delighted as his community rallied to raise more than £2,000.
Robert Perkins, 76, has worked hard all his life but said he had given up hope after losing his last role because of the pandemic.
He says he does not have enough money to retire and, without work, had sunk £1,500 into his overdraft, reports MyLondon.
Desperate Robert, who does not have regular internet access, took to leaving notes on windscreens in the hope of finding a job.
His efforts were noticed by locals in Muswell Hill, London who have raised £2,140 – allowing him to clear his debts.
Anyone who might have an opportunity for Robert should contact the Muswell & Friends Facebook group
Robert lost his last job as a cleaner midway through 2020 because of coronavirus and was scraping by on his state pension.
He said: “I’m on my own and quite isolated, I need to pay bills.
“I’ve got a rent that’s really quite high and at the moment I don’t have any money really.
“You’d like to pick the dream job but as weeks and months go by and things just get more and more difficult, I’d honestly try anything.”
Experienced in engineering, administration and manual labour, it’s certainly not out of pickiness that Robert finds himself out of a job.
Luckily, people in the community spotted his notes popping up throughout March and April and got in touch to offer their help.
One of these was Anka Jakubiak, 39.
She reached out to Robert and decided to spread the word about his job search on the local community Facebook group.
She said: “I’ve been helping another elderly man from the area for some time, so when I saw Robert’s notes I understood that he had no other means to get help, no smartphone, no internet, and the libraries are closed.
“People from the younger generations like us don’t realise how difficult it is when you’re digitally excluded like that.”
Anka, along with Dave Higgins another member of the community, helped set Robert up with a mobile phone, some food and a new CV to aid his job search.
More than 500 people reacted to Anka’s Facebook post when it first went up on March 23.
Since then she has updated the post several times and added a fundraiser on April 2 to help Robert cover his rent in the short-term.
The fundraiser soon far exceeded Anka’s initial aim of £200, with the generosity of the Muswell Hill community raising £2,140 in total, enough to clear the overdraft Robert had built up since losing his job.
Anka said: “The support and love from everyone has been absolutely overwhelming.”
The moment on Thursday (April 22) she and Dave revealed how much people had donated, Robert was “grinning like a schoolboy” underneath his mask, Anka said.
Speaking about the support he has received from the community, Robert said: “It’s quite revealing when you meet people like this who want to help you, they don’t have to do it yet they still do.
“What can you say really, I’d like to thank all of these people for their kindness, there was even someone from Australia who donated.
“It’s been such a surprise but it gives you hope.”
While Robert is in a much better position now than a few months ago, he is still looking for a full-time job and would be grateful for any opportunity to work.
Anyone who might have an opportunity for Robert should contact the Muswell & Friends Facebook group.