Meet Child and Youth Care Worker Grant who qualified through ׽ͼ’s Career Start Training Programme and is now a mentor to Trainees.  - ׽ͼ: Specialist services & support for young people facing adversity

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Posted: May 28, 2024

Child and Youth Care Worker Grant still remembers his experience of joining ׽ͼ and how influential his mentors were to him, which motivated Grant to qualify as a Child and Youth Care Worker and help any new recruits who followed after him.

Grant reflected on when he first joined Career Start: “As a young Trainee, I knew one day I wanted to be as welcoming and helpful to others as my mentors, Kirsten and Aleisha had been to me.”

“Kirsten was my first mentor who was amazing. She showed me exactly what the role of a Child and Youth Care Worker involved and included me in all her day-to-day tasks, giving me great insight but Kirsten decided to go part-time to attend University. I then selected Aleisha to be my mentor as she was such a big part of our team and always first to help others.”

Grateful for his own Career Start experience and keen to help shape the journey of upcoming Child and Youth Care Workers he successfully achieved his goal of becoming a mentor himself: “I became a mentor as I enjoy helping people and having been a Trainee myself, I know how daunting it can all be but also how rewarding it is when you come out the other side. I love nothing more than helping people and seeing others reach goals and succeed.”

Grant gives an insight into the role of a mentor: “Working with young people can be quite busy with a lot going on. Career Start is a mixture of working in the house and completing the HNC qualification, it’s the support network in place that helps you to achieve. You have a lot of support from experienced staff and the Learning and Development team to help you.”

“My two previous Trainee who I mentored said they were grateful for me and that I was really supportive.  My goal is to help new staff to settle in and share my experience with them to make them feel as comfortable as possible. I support Trainees through all the ups and downs they experience along the way of reaching their moment of realisation that this is the job for them. All of a sudden, Trainees recognise the difference they are making and how fulfilled they feel coming to work each day, it’s extremely motivational for me to see this first-hand.”

Becoming a mentor is rewarding and Grant shares what he himself has learned from Trainees: “Personally, since becoming a mentor, my time management is much better as I have to balance carrying out my role as well as spending time with others, setting goals with them and monitoring their progress.”

“I feel I have further developed my own skills too and I now have more responsibilities to help others. Although I am a mentor to Trainees, I am also approachable to all new staff team members as we’re all here for the same reason – to make a difference to the lives of young people. There is great team work at ׽ͼ.”

Meet Grant’s Mentor, Aleisha

An inspiration to Grant, Aleisha shares her point-of-view of being a mentor. Also, a previous Trainee, Aleisha has progressed to qualify as a Child and Youth Care Worker, mentor others and achieve the promotion of Senior Practitioner. She leads by example of what you can achieve through Career Start.

“I was recommended to the mentoring programme by a colleague. I took the time to consider taking on the extra challenge and ultimately, decided I would enjoy passing on my experience and helping others. The responsibility of being a mentor developed my own skills too and as a result, I have since achieved career progression from Trainee to Child and Youth Care Worker to a Senior Practitioner.”

“The role of a mentor is incredibly important as working at ׽ͼ and spending time in the houses is fast-paced. As a mentor, I am prepared to offer one-to-one support to Trainees and be someone they can rely upon. It does involve going over and above to make sure the Trainee is comfortable with their responsibilities.”

“I was also a Trainee myself so I have been through the learning process of completing the training programme. I am someone Trainees can relate to, I’ve been in their shoes.”

“My own mentor was Care and Education Coordinator Craig who was energetic and enthusiastic and taught me the priority is building genuine relationships with the kids and getting to know them. Also, that humour goes a long way.”

“The entire staff team is friendly and willing to help Trainees; however, it is valuable to have one set person who dedicates the time for one-to-one support. With a mentor, there’s always time to ask questions and take away any anxieties about starting the new role.”

Apply now to Career Start in Child and Youth Care. You’l receive full support and mentoring from ׽ͼ’s own Learning and Development team and a mentor similar to Grant as you accomplish beginning a brand-new rewarding career with ׽ͼ.

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