My Working Day: Sanctuary Support WorkerFiled under: News
I have been working for Behind Closed Doors for just over a year. I work with a wide variety of people who have experienced domestic abuse and may also have additions needs, such as mental health, drug and alcohol issues or other problems.
Every day is different – I could be taking calls, visiting service users, going to court, attending meetings at school, with solicitors or other supporting agencies, collecting food parcels, organising additional support or safety planning with service users, sometimes I work from home and sometimes I work from the office.
I start work at about 8.30am so that I can organise my day and contact anyone that I need to before they go to work and check and respond to my emails. Today I had a lengthy conversation with a new service user. She had not felt that anyone had listened to her before and I made sure that she had time to go through everything with me. We made sure that there was time for her to make a cup of tea as we had a lot to cover. At the end of our call we made a plan for our next appointment. We agreed to meet face-to-face.
I started to type up additional notes – while dealing with calls from children’s social services, service users and other agencies. I make a referral to Money Buddies and group support work for another service user.
In the afternoon I attended a short court hearing with a service user who is representing herself. She is not eligible for legal aid and has been doing a brilliant job at court, but it is a daunting experience and she has asked for emotional support. The hearing was shorter than expected and it gave us an opportunity to debrief afterwards.
I love my job – I find it rewarding and challenging at the same time. I hope that I make a positive difference to other people’s lives and I enjoy getting to know all of the service users that I come into contact with. At the end of the day I make sure that all my handwritten notes are shredded and tidy my desk. I write a list of what I need to do the following day and I turn off my computer. Then it’s time for me to relax, now that it is lighter at the end of the day I head to the local river as often as possible, for a cold water swim with friends! It is an exhilarating feeling, it makes me relax and sets me up for the next day, to start again.