Returning to work after being a carer: Teri’s story

Teri, 48, was referred from the National Careers Service after approaching them for help to return to work. She was a carer for her son and had dedicated years to supporting him. There came a point where he no longer needed her support and Teri needed to find a job. She had been a Volunteer Practitioner who had worked with vulnerable children – this was an area she was really passionate about although she was not 100% sure she could earn a living from it.

She lacked confidence and was unsure of what direction her job search should take. Her Employment Coach, Pauline, helped Teri to see that she had viable transferable skills through looking at her previous roles and what she had learned while caring.

When she became clearer on the area that she wanted to work in, Pauline and Teri focused on her area’s of strength which was her caring experience and communications skills. She wanted to go back into a role which supported people. Pauline also provided support and
encouragement to apply for roles that suited her skills set. They proceeded to work together on applications, cover letters and interview practice.

During the time they spent together Teri’s confidence grew and she could see the value that she could bring to the workplace. Teri got a clearer idea of her career goals and said that her outlook had “most definitely” changed since being on the programme. She is now employed as a Family Support Assistant.

Speaking about her Employment Coach, Pauline, Teri said: “I can’t believe that Pauline ‘made a difference’ to my life.” Teri continued: “She listened to what I was saying, even though I didn’t have a clue about the jobs I could apply for, only what I loved doing. She helped me draft my CV and covering letter to the hiring manager. She encouraged me all the way. I was amazed at her enthusiasm and support, having never accessed this kind of service before nor ever known what I really wanted to do, she has been awesome. I can’t thank her enough.

I will recommend her and this service to anyone that wants to find a job they want to do as opposed to just getting a job to pay the bills.
Teri added: “She certainly went above and beyond what I thought the service would provide. She is passionate about her role, and I felt so supported throughout even though I was fairly ambivalent in what the service could provide when signing up.

When asked what she would say to someone considering contacting the programme, Teri said: “Do it! Ask for Pauline“.

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