Make care your career

Many people would have considered care as a job, rather than a career option until they came and worked for us. Those that have, find that they have plenty of scope for career progression – with many moving from care assistant to managerial and other specialist roles.

You don’t need to have previous experience, you just need a naturally caring nature, enjoy helping and dealing with people and be willing to go the extra mile to provide the sort of care you would want your own loved ones to receive.

We’ve helped to develop a Career Pathway, which allows our staff to progress their careers, undertake training, gain qualifications, skills and expertise. Staff have a mentor and you can also mentor others as you develop.

Below are stories from our team – we hope they inspire you to consider a career in care – to have a chat email us at rushmoor@bluebirdcare.co.uk or call us on 01276 683577.


Jade Grigg - Customer Support Manager
 
I joined Bluebird Care in 2014 as a Care Assistant, after taking a gap year from my Adult Nursing Degree. After one month, a new position of support supervisor opened up, to help the area supervisor with some of her duties. The area she managed was growing, with both customers and Care Assistants.


I had a decision to make as this was a full-time role that I couldn’t do alongside my degree. However, for me, the decision was easy as person-centred, one-on-one care is something I feel very passionate about and this was also at the heart of the Bluebird Care ethos and values.

After one year, I had gained experience and knowledge and with my supervisor being offered another position, I was given the opportunity to undertake the customer support manager role.

I have been a customer support manager for almost a year and I haven't looked back since! I enjoy working alongside the Care Assistants to create a supportive and valued caring relationship with and for our customers.

Andreea Ghiuzan, Care Coordinator

I’m originally from Italy and I joined Bluebird Care in Dec 2014 as a Care Assistant, after working for the Red Cross as a volunteer. Although I had no previous, formal training, I knew that I enjoyed helping people, so that’s what attracted me to the job.

In Italy I worked in quality control, checking fruit and in my spare time I volunteered to help with flood relief in Romania, helping people to get clean clothes and packing up food parcels.

It’s a really nice feeling when you know you have helped someone and as care coordinator, I make sure that the right care assistant goes to the right customer at the time when they need them. It sounds simple but it can be a challenge sometimes.

I really enjoy meeting new people in my role, the customers and their families and I enjoy trying to help them.

The training here at Bluebird Care is very good. I have found the end of life care particularly useful, because you need specialist knowledge to be able to give the best possible care to someone at such an important time.

Care is most definitely a career; I was first promoted to support coordinator and then to my current post of lead care coordinator. It is a very satisfying job to help others and you make a big difference to someone. I wouldn’t do anything else now!
 
Kat Podgorska, Care Assistant

I joined as a Care Assistant nearly four years ago after moving here from Poland and I love the role. After working here for a while, I tried working as support coordinator in the office, but I missed my customers too much and found I preferred being out and about so we agreed that I would return to care work. I definitely made the right decision for me.

Although I enjoyed my previous job in Poland helping young people with training, after eight years I wanted a change. I find this job so satisfying and you become so friendly with your customers, while still being professional.

I really like the feeling that I am making a difference in someone’s daily life – it’s so rewarding. It’s a great feeling to know that you are helping them to stay at home where they want to be.

There’s a lot of possibility for progressing your career also. Although an office role wasn’t for me, I am now hoping to specialise in Parkinson’s. One of my customers has the disease and as part of my NVQ Level 3 I have done a lot of research into it, which has benefited not only me, but also my customer as I can share what I have learned.

Michelle Willoughby, Care Assistant

I worked for Royal Mail for over 20 years and it was like a family. During this time, I took a long break from work to spend time with my teenage family as well as recovering from a medical issue. The thought of returning to work was daunting, but I saw that Bluebird Care was looking for Care Assistants. The work was varied, I care for others and enjoy communicating! Perfect.
 
Since passing my induction three and a half years ago, I have achieved an NVQ in social care. All the training that I need for my role is given and updated regularly. I have a varied role, but the best part is the trust and appreciation I get from my customers, as well as their family and friends. Helping to improve the quality of life of our customers and to see the results is so rewarding. 
 
Bluebird Care is a great team and the support is immeasurable. This year my first grandson was born and I can have the time I want to spend with him and work too. 

Helen Hill, Live-In Care Assistant

My husband was elected Mayor, a year-long appointment from May 2012 to May 2013. The Queen's Jubilee Year and London Olympics both fell within that year. As his wife I became Mayoress, a role for which I felt totally unsuited and way out of my depth.  However with a smile on my face I accompanied him to many of the engagements. It was a thrilling year of everything from grand garden parties and dinners, to formal church services, fetes, awards nights, visits to local schools, children's  nurseries, hospitals, residential and nursing homes. We met so many lovely people working tirelessly and passionately for local charities. 

As local Publicans for over 20 years, we thought we knew a bit about our town, but we were astonished to discover how much work was being carried out in the community. After deciding it was time to consider leaving the pub and with my retirement date at least a decade away, I needed to find a job that I could continue to do up to that age. With my confidence high after a whirlwind year of events and meeting people, I began to think about what kind of work I might like. 

I considered working with the elderly and volunteered with a local nursing home for a few months and thoroughly enjoyed it. I thought my customer service experience from the pub might be transferable to care work - in both cases it is not just about meeting a customer's expectations but exceeding those expectations. A tiny bit of extra effort can add a bit of sparkle to someone's day, so I applied for a job as a Care Assistant three years ago and haven’t looked back since. 

I have chosen to mostly take on 'live-in' assignments which I love, partly because the day can unfold at the customer's pace. Routines can be a little more flexible and relatives can be reassured that there is someone there keeping an eye on their relative. The feeling of satisfaction from having made a difference to someone's day is like no other.  I feel truly privileged to work at such an intimate level with my customers and I love my job.
 
Whether they have dementia or physical limitations, I try to see the person behind that and support them to get the most out of every day. Their life stories, photographs and memories remind me that not so long ago they were active, independent and hardworking individuals, who deserve to live out their final years, months, days and hours with the same dignity and respect any of us expects.