Charlene pursues a career

Charlene Halford has been part of GRoW for a year, since joining last January, and has found the Programme has helped her gain confidence and motivation for pursuing a career.
Charlene said “Since I started the GRoW Programme I have met up with Liz every few weeks and it has really helped me to develop my confidence. I never used to be very outgoing and
found it really hard to attend interviews as I was so shy. I really wanted to go back to work but I just never felt condent enough to take the necessary steps.
As soon as I became part of the GRoW Programme I started applying for jobs and also started volunteering at my son’s school, one day a week. I attended a GRoW Networking event recently where there was a representative from Harlington Education Centre who informed me of courses that I could do free of charge as I am a single parent on income support. I went along and signed up for an 18 week Child Teaching Assistant Course and am really looking forward to starting it next month.
I have found the support that GRoW has given me invaluable. My confidence has really grown and I’m sure that if I hadn’t started on the Programme that I would still be just saying that I want a job rather than be where I am now – getting hands-on practical experience in a workplace environment and studying to develop my career!
Before having my children I used to work in retail but I ideally want a job in school hours to fit around my children. I initially started volunteering at the school to increase my confidence because I hadn’t worked in so long but I really enjoy working with the children and I’m looking forward to seeing where it takes me. At the moment I’m focusing on Childcare and when my course finishes in July and I have my Childcare Level 1 and English qualification I can go on to do the Level 2 course.
Volunteering at the school is really an added bonus to doing the course as it is gives me practical experience too. I’m feeling very confident at the moment and looking to the future and hopefully, if all works out I’ll get a permanent job at the school where I work in the end!

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