A man with red hair and beard sits on the steps of a learning disability support service

I get an awful lot of reward from doing the work

“I wanted a career change”

I wanted a career change and that’s how I became a Support Worker.

I had been a hairdresser for 30 years and I used to do voluntary work. Along with the voluntary work, I was a foster carer and that brought me into a different career.

Before, I was an Outreach Support Worker where I was going into people’s homes. That was lone working. Here, there’s a great team – I like the support of a team, and I’m learning a lot more from other people.

It means a great deal to me being able to support people that need support. I get an awful lot of reward from doing the work which I wasn’t getting in my old career.

And with the fostering and the voluntary work, I just knew that it was really good for me and I really enjoyed making things better for people.

Southdown manages supported living services across Sussex. Supported living is where an individual owns or rents their own home and has control over the support they get and how they live their lives. Accommodation and support is provided separately. It can be very different for different people. For one person, supported living might be a few hours of support a week to enable them to live independently by themselves in a rented flat. For another it may be around the clock support in a shared house or self-contained flat.