Christina Harris has travelled the world, lived in 10 different countries and worked in multiple industries – but since starting a job as a home carer in the idyllic county of Monmouthshire, she has no plans to move.
Previously, Christina owned her own development company where she specialised in land acquisiton and conveyancing in Indonesia for foreign investors. She also had her own real estate company, a restaurant and a bar. worked in the hospitality industry, before finding a role in marketing and promotions for various hotels.
But with the travel industry grinding to a halt during the coronavirus pandemic and her future looking uncertain, Christina decided to look for something new.
She soon came across a job advert at Monmouthshire County Council, working in social care and decided to take the plunge.
Now, Christina is enjoying her role so much that she wishes she had joined the team a decade ago.
She said: “I saw an advert to work in home care and I thought I would give it a go. I’ve got to be honest, I love it. It’s one of those jobs where you work alone some of the time, but you don’t always work alone, you do meet colleagues.
“You’ve got full support and these people are a different level of special, honestly. Everybody is there to help you and you just feel part of an amazing team. I wish I had done it 10 years ago.
“You are keeping people in their homes, you’re getting to meet people and I’m using skills from my previous job, such as conversation and people skills.
“When you go into somebody’s home, obviously, your responsibility is to behave correctly, to treat them like a person. We might be the only person they see all day. They might not have seen anyone since they saw me yesterday, so just to sit down, have a chat and find out how they are feeling, people get to know you – they confide in you.”
Originally from the Rhondda, Christina believes one of the benefits of the job is the training employees receive by going out to work with experienced carers. While being able to explore the idyllic parts of rural Monmouthshire and visit various homes across the county is another added benefit.
Christina said: “If you think you wouldn’t be able to do personal care, you will have the training,”
“You will go out with some of the best girls you will ever work with, they will show you exactly what you have to do. If you can talk and you like people, you will love this job and driving around the beautiful area.
“You don’t know what you can do until you try it. It’s very rewarding, I mean that sounds like a cliché but it really is. You will really enjoy it and if you don’t, what have you got to lose?”
If you have always felt passionate about providing care but have never taken that next step, then now could be the perfect opportunity.
As well as working in a rewarding environment, you will benefit from flexible working which includes part-time hours. You will also have a good rate of pay with increased pay during night shifts, supported training, annual leave and the opportunity to further your career.
Home carers make a difference to the lives of so many people, particularly those impacted by loneliness or isolation. The importance of caring for the county’s most vulnerable residents has increased during the pandemic – and with the NHS likely to face winter pressures, your impact on communities will continue to be visible.
People from all walks of life are encouraged to apply. If you would like to find out more about care opportunities in Monmouthshire, contact [email protected].