Sumithra’s journey towards returning to work started with a simple wish to do something different with her day. As a mum to 7-year-old and 20-month-old daughters, she was looking for a change from her regular routine and through the GRoW Programme found inspiration for a new career.
Sumithra said “I found out about the GRoW Programme in a leaflet at Sheringham School in Newham and thought it would not only be a break from my normal day but also a good opportunity to explore ideas around returning to work. As a mother to two young children, the GRoW Session’s focus on working in schools aligned perfectly with my family’s needs as I really need a job that allows me to work the hours that fit around my children. I had prior work experience in retail but had taken a career break when I had my youngest child, planning to go back to work when she begins nursery next year. The timing of the Programme was therefore perfect for me as it has motivated me to start the journey towards work now rather than waiting until she starts.
The GRoW Programme offered comprehensive training, covering CV building, interview skills, and for those people who are interested in self-employment, business planning. As well as providing really useful practical tools it did wonders for my confidence and motivation.
As part of the activities, we had to stand up and speak, which being quite a shy and reserved person was quite scary at first! Liz and Michelle who ran the sessions were great at alleviating my fears though, explaining that there are no wrong or right answers which made it so much easier. It was such a confidence booster to participate fully in this way and it helped to get the whole group working together. This was a key part of what the programme offered – the chance to be part of a supportive community with like-minded people – and it was instrumental in helping me feel motivated to work towards my goal.
I have now completed the 5 sessions at Sheringham Children’s Centre and am looking forward to starting the Multiply Programme next Tuesday and developing more skills. These training courses and the school-specific training such as Safeguarding that GRoW have introduced me to will be invaluable for my CV when I start applying for jobs.
The GRoW Programme has been such a refreshing experience for me to do something with my mind and really think about myself and my future and I am looking forward now to the next steps on my journey to work.”