Carer in the Spotlight: Ruth
A love of caring
I came to care work with a languages degree and experience of motherhood, having spent ten years working as a PA of the secretarial variety to the MD of a large multinational manufacturer. I was made redundant in September 2020, so I used the time that became available to me to complete my foundation year as a trainee counsellor.
As I start my professional diploma in Counselling this September, I started looking for something that was flexible and where I could use some of the skills I’ve learnt as a student counsellor, as well as where I might learn something that would inform my studies. I’d never considered care work before and, now that I’ve started, I wish I had considered it earlier. I’d no idea how much I was going to enjoy myself doing it.
A great ethos
For me, Kemble is a lovely company to work for, because it’s a family-run enterprise. Coming from a background in industry, that alone makes a noticeable difference to the company ethos and staff relationships – everyone is equal, and treated equally. I’ve noticed that training staff and managers put carer wellbeing high up on the list so that you’re made to feel welcome and comfortable and that creates a really good environment for learning to take place. Training is very high-quality and because it’s hands-on, I felt ready to go out with an experienced carer, and pretty soon after that, confident to work on my own.
What do you love about the job?
My favourite part of the job is the clients themselves. My manager took a lot of care matching me up with clients that were suitable for my skills and background, so that the client has maximum benefit and I get maximum satisfaction. I have only a small group of clients – four in all, including one couple – which means that I have plenty of opportunity for building relationships, which I think is my special skill, and I get to know what my clients want and need, how they like it done, what they like and what will be most helpful to them.
I’ve found it really satisfying when we’ve been able to work really well together to get the result that’s best for the client. I experience a high level of job satisfaction because of this – I know I’ve made a difference. I get to do things I really enjoy - cooking, reading Shakespeare in the garden, listening to our favourite music, lifting a client’s mood with a book about the place they grew up, and playing Monopoly to name but a few! There hasn’t been a day yet when I haven’t wanted to go to work and I always look forward to seeing my clients again. I think that level of satisfaction is rare and I feel very fortunate that I have it, and that it makes someone else happy too.