Hemamali came to GROW at the beginning of June, looking to get back to work. She has been an active participant in the GRoW Programme, undertaking training and taking part in a range of GRoW activities and has now set her sights on becoming a Learning Support Assistant.
Hemamali said “I found out about GRoW though Family Services at my son’s school. I had a part-time Customer Services job at Heathrow but in 2016 I had to take redundancy when my shift pattern changed and I was unable to fit the hours around my son. I am now a single parent and my son’s father looks after him at the weekend which has opened up opportunities for me to work weekends as well as during the week. I would like to ideally work in Customer Services at the weekend but my main goal is to work as a Learning Support Assistant. Working in a school offers me the flexibility I need for my son but it is also something I would like to do for myself as I really like working with children.
When I first came to GRoW I was encouraged to take part in all of their activities. My GRoW Adviser Kaneez is amazing, she keeps me updated about everything that is happening, sending me reminders of all the different events I can go along to. She makes it so easy as she gives me all the Zoom links so all I have to do is turn up! I did the GRoW Bootcamp which was very useful, it really helped give me some direction on what steps to take next. I attended the ‘Preparing to work in Schools’ session, the CV and Interview Workshops, the SEN session for parents with autistic children and I go regularly to the Zoom Coffee Mornings where sometimes they have special guest speakers. All of the activities help me to think about how I am going to manage things such as childcare when I go back to work.
Currently I am doing the Paediatric First Aid training and I am registered to do the Strive Training Course to help me work with children with challenging behaviour. I really want to work in a Specialist Provision School to help children with special needs to become more independent so this course is perfect for me.
When I first came to GRoW I didn’t know how to reach my goal but they have shown me the path to my destination. They really do offer the whole package by helping you think about what you want to do, where you want to be and then how to go about it to achieve it. I would recommend GRoW to anyone who wants to get back to work.