Mike’s discovered his true purpose!
Mike is a Team Leader at Broadview, one of our National Autistic Society (NAS) accredited services in Hampshire. Before joining this vibrant household, Mike had a long career in the world of finance. Deep down, he wasn’t happy in his job and knew finance wasn’t his destiny.
After taking time to reflect, Mike knew he needed a change and craved a career that was more fulfilling – something that didn’t feel like “just a job”.
Spending most of his career in finance, it was time for Mike to start investing in his own future and find out what his true purpose was. Armed with a passion to help others, he wasn’t sure exactly what path to take, but he knew in his heart it was time to embark on a new journey. That’s when Mike approached Voyage Care.
A leap of faith
When he first joined Voyage Care, Mike had no experience of caring for vulnerable people. Leaving his career in finance was a brave step. Starting a new life in care was a far cry from his previous high-flying corporate role. Mike was more familiar with managing money than caring for other people. But, listening to his instincts, he took a leap of faith.
Mike joined Broadview as a Support Worker, which came with a massive pay cut, but he knew he was making the right decision. Mike knew the fulfilment he would get from supporting people to live amazing lives outweighed his financial sacrifice.
From his very first day at Broadview, Mike was welcomed with open arms and taken under the wing of Service Manager Alison. Recognising his deep desire to help others, Alison, and the team, empowered Mike to aim high in his new role.
Mike felt supported from the moment he walked through the door. Arriving with no experience and unsure what to expect, the team provided a warm working environment and expert training, so Mike could feel confident in supporting the needs of people with autism.
Mike commented, “Being supported and appreciated by other people is invaluable. The role of a Support Worker is complicated, with many layers – you have people’s lives in your hands. It’s a huge responsibility. To feel so supported by your team is a feeling that money can’t buy.”
Coming out of his shell
Before joining his new team at Voyage Care, Mike was shy and never outwardly expressed happiness. Helping him to come out of his shell, the team at Broadview unearthed an inner sense of joy for Mike – something he’d never before experienced at work.
Very quickly, Mike was noticing how much happier he was – and it was showing when he looked in the mirror. Working closely with a knowledgeable and experienced team, and receiving specialist autism training, Mike was empowered to understand how his emotions might affect the people we support:
“When I’m at work, I feel like the happiest person in the world. I try to be as happy as I can for both my team and the people we support.”
A budding new career
Mike started as a Support Worker and, with dedication to the people we support, was promoted to Team Leader. In both these roles, his duties involve developing the people we support and helping them to achieve their goals.
By empowering the people we support to participate in activities around the house, Mike enables them to learn new skills and reach a level of independence that’s right for them. With a sense of independence and confidence in using their skills, Mike also assists the people we support to engage in meaningful community-based activities.
Along with the rest of the Broadview team, Mike’s implemented an exciting eco drive to make Broadview more sustainable.
Starting a few years ago by adopting chickens, the campaign’s grown a lot. Over recent months, Mike and the team have taught the people we support about recycling.
Drawing on his specialist training, Mike used charts and associated specific colours with the different materials, like glass and paper, so the people we support can recycle with confidence!
Empowered with this knowledge, they also worked together to compose a song, so they would easily remember the steps they need to take when recycling. The household now composts and grows their own fruits, herbs, and vegetables. Working at Broadview is very different from Mike’s previous office-based role! He’s noticed a big improvement in his own wellbeing and feels pleased with his life now.
Mike knows that every day, he’s making a massive difference to the lives of vulnerable people. The skills, knowledge, and laughter he shares with them pays dividends to their development, helping them to dream big, aim high and achieve positive outcomes.
But he’s also a realist and knows that some days will be tougher than others. Putting the needs of others before his own, Mike’s experienced first-hand that the rewards of his role far outweigh the challenges.
For Mike, there are many reasons to become a Support Worker:
“There are many reasons to become a Support Worker – enhancing other’s lives and feeling fulfilled are just the beginning of those reasons. This type of work stops you being so self-centred and insular. It helps you open up and grow. You become more pleased with life because what you’re doing has real meaning to other people. You’re giving people opportunities they wouldn’t have without some support.”
Roles in social care are complex and have many moving parts. Along with sourcing fun and meaningful activities for the people we support, there’s a sense of deep responsibility. From administering medication, to ensuring the people we support are safe at all times, it draws on incredible personal qualities, as Mike has experienced.
“You have another person’s life in your hands. It’s a huge responsibility. You have to be diligent and constantly aware of their environment, as well as compassionate and empathetic.”
Even though Mike emphasises how rewarding a role as a Support Worker is, he understands it might seem daunting to those who have no experience. He recommends,
“Working in care is so rewarding, however dip your toes into the pool before diving right in. It’s easy to assume it’s straightforward, but there are many layers to this job! ”
In his previous life, Mike worked a job that left him unfulfilled and didn’t align with his values. He was shy and unhappy at work. He had hope that there was something more valuable in his future.
Today, Mike’s life is enriched with meaning and purpose, which he credits to the people we support. Mike took a risk leaving a high-profile career. But now, he experiences more joy and fulfilment than he ever thought possible:
“My favourite part about this role is hearing the people we support laugh. When I hear that laughter, I know I’ve done something incredible. I wish I’d done this thirty years ago.”
Learn more about our roles!
We have a range of career opportunities across the UK. If you are interested in joining Voyage Care, view our latest vacancies and start your next best decision today!