Natalie - Team Leader, Outreach Service
Natalie has worked with Cygnet Springside in Devon since it opened three years ago. She joined as a Support Worker and her role has since developed to that of Team Leader. After gaining a psychology degree, Natalie trained as a manager working for Lidl supermarkets. This role gave her valuable work experience but she was keen to work in a role more suited to her studies and after doing voluntary work with a young carers’ group she joined Cygnet Springside.
What keeps Natalie here is “the variety – no two days are the same”. Of course, as in any job, there is a certain amount of routine. There are regular visits to service users, ranging from those who may need 2 hours care per week to 4 hours care every day of the week and, of course, there are regular reports to be written but, otherwise the routine is loose and you can never be sure of what to expect from one day to the next.
Natalie’s additional responsibilities as Team Leader require her to oversee the support workers, providing support and supervision, as well as organising the rotas and the production of paperwork such as month-end reports.
For Natalie, the most rewarding part of the job is “helping someone achieve and seeing the pleasure that brings them and generally helping them progress.” Of course, you also have to be prepared for setbacks and that can be disheartening, “it’s hard to see clients deteriorating and seeing them struggle and possibly go back into care”.
As Cygnet Supported Living expands its provision into supported living services, Natalie looks forward to the new challenges this will bring.
Amy - Support Worker, Outreach Services
A lecture on autism during her psychology degree studies at Southampton University gave Amy the direction she needed. She found the subject fascinating and immediately spoke to the lecturer to find out more. This led her to start voluntary work with special needs clients and then to answer a job advert with Cygnet Springside in 2009. Initially she joined as a full-time Support Worker, but since the birth of her first child, she has worked on a part-time basis.
Amy loves “the job, the clients and the team”. The most rewarding part of the job is “to see the client progress and get better. You get to know them and you really want the best for them”.
Amy is very much looking forward to expanding her role into working with supported living users.