Louise's Story - Orchardville



Louise’s Story

Community Inclusion and Progression Support Worker

‘The most enjoyable part of my job is that every day is different. Every day brings different people, different activities and different challenges to overcome. This means you never have the chance to be bored.’

Working as a Community Inclusion and Progression Support Worker in Orchardville’s Bangor office may sound complex, but as Louise admits ‘the job itself is easier to explain!’

‘I work with adults with various learning disabilities or autism. I help to teach
participants essential skills that help them in everyday life. We do this in a fun way,
for example taking people out for a walk or for coffee as this helps them learn how
to manage money and recognize different forms of money. The walking not only
promotes exercise and a healthy lifestyle, but also road safety – we teach the participants
how to cross the road, how to avoid cars and how to use traffic lights. These everyday
skills often get forgotten so it helps to implement them into our menu of activities.’

Like many recent graduates, Louise was initially unsure as to what she’d like to do after leaving university. It was an email from a local jobs website that alerted her to the Support Worker role with Orchardville and she has not looked back since, taking full advantage of every opportunity her new post has offered.

‘My colleagues have been nothing but encouraging and supportive. They’ve pushed
me to try new things and supported me in making decisions. This applies in all the different
areas of Orchardville. I work in the community inclusion service but have also been
well supported by the employment and transitions teams as well as by my line manager. This
makes the job easy to come to everyday when you know you have the creative freedom
and support necessary to grow.’

As for the future, Louise is keen to continue her development, initially within her current role but moving forward she has a clear view of what the future might hold.

‘I would like to work my way up in the organisation as it’s not very often you find a job
you love. I’m still relatively new in my position, so I am open to all the new opportunities
that present themselves to me, gaining experience and meeting new people where possible.’

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At work in the Orchard Café, Belfast

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