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A Social Enterprise providing community based support for adults with learning disabilities and/or autism in the South West
Meet the Team: Michelle's Journey

Meet the Team: Michelle's Journey

27 April 2020


I have always known, from a very young age, that I wanted to work in a caring profession.

As I have been around a while, I remember the negative terminology and attitude towards people that had any form of disability.

I remember the exact time I knew I wanted to try and make a difference. I was around eight years old and me and my pals would go to the local swimming baths regularly and so did the local swimming group for people with learning disabilities. Among the group was a young lad with Down Syndrome, he was always so excited to go swimming and would jump straight in the pool. When this happened my friend would jump out; I asked her why and her reaction shocked me even at that young age; she said she got out as she didn’t want to catch anything from him. It was at that point, right there, I felt I wanted to defend him and others that were vulnerable. 

So I began my journey into care as soon as I left school. 

For me, being a Support Worker is not just about supporting the customer, it is also about your colleagues, family and friends. Working with You First is like a big family, we have all had journeys in our lives as is now quite evident from everyone who has written in. I have always felt supported with my time at You First when I’ve needed it and even more so now with the coronavirus. The daily updates from Andy and Nathalie and not forgetting Jack who puts it all together for us in graphs and percentages!

I’m certainly looking at life differently right now. I think my biggest delight is definitely supporting M and how far that amazing lady has come. Being part of that feels me with such pride, being part of the bespoke team that has helped and encouraged her to live her best life. We have some funny and amazing moments together and her sense of humour is fantastic. That would not be possible if we didn’t have the support from management, the appropriate training, encouragement and understanding that we have all needed at one time or another; that certainly makes you feel empowered to do your absolute best and to pass on the knowledge that you have to others.