Banu said “I went to the GRoW Programme when I became a single parent and wanted to change my life for the better. I had worked for 20 years in Turkey before coming to this country and I didn’t want to just survive on benefits. I had a successful job in a global Advertising Agency and wanted a better life for me and my daughter in the future. I applied for an English course at my local Adult Learning Centre and I went to the workshops that the GRoW Programme offered.The GRoW Workshops helped me with information such as how I could become self employed and also how to improve my CV. They also helped me understand about how recruitment agencies worked and could help me find work. Another thing it really helped me with was improving my confidence. Just meeting the other mums on the programme and realising they were in a similar position to me was so good and I made new friends. Being on the programme helped me to improve my English speaking too as I got to practice talking with other people and doing role play.
I really felt that what I learned on the GRoW Programme helped me to prepare for getting a job. I started a Childcare course and finished my Level 1 before starting on the Level 2 which I am still doing now. As part of the Level 2 I needed to do some volunteering work and first did some volunteering helping a teacher at an ESOL beginner class which led me on to finding another volunteering role in a nursery. The Adult Learning Centre got me the DBS check I needed to work at the nursery and this experience helped me with my Level 2. I am planning to do the Level 3 once I complete the course.
One of my friends at my Childcare Course told me about a job at a Private Nursery which is close to my home and is term time working only. I rang Tosin at the GRoW Programme and she helped me put together a really good cover letter to go with my cv. I sent it off to the manager and the next day she rang me for an interview and by the end of the week I had got the job!
The job is perfect for me as I have an 8 year old daughter and I don’t have any support networks. It’s a very different job from what I was doing before but it really suits me now as it also gives me the freedom to be able to back to see my family and friends in Istanbul during the school holidays as I will not have to work then. Lots of women want to do a school job and I feel really lucky to now have one.