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“Applying for this job was vital for my development”

Working in a children’s home is rewarding in many ways. You can make a difference to young people’s lives by helping them reach their full potential, as well as develop your own professional skills to work towards a leadership role in children’s social care.

Zinat achieved a promotion to team leader in one of our children’s homes. Here she shares why St Christopher’s is a great place to build your career and what she has learnt so far.

What attracted you to your new role?

Before I started in my new role I was impressed with the opportunities provided to me as a residential worker, such as the learning and development process. Over 80% of promotions at St Christopher’s were internal so I had no hesitation in my mind but to go for the role. I saw many staff within St Christopher’s had been promoted, which gave me extra confidence to apply for this role. Personal growth is important to me; applying for this job was vital for my development and to challenge myself in a different form.

What have been the main differences in this role to your previous one?

The main differences are that I lead on the majority of shifts, supervising staff, attending managerial meetings and being on call. These differences have provided me with problem-solving skills, leading and making crucial decisions under pressure.

Have you experienced any challenges in your new role?

Now that I am on call, I need to make decisions on other St Christopher’s homes. These challenges have built my confidence and complemented my decision-making skills.

What things have helped you to settle in?

Without a doubt, the support of my colleagues and managers has assisted me in settling in. It is always beneficial in the workplace to have supportive people around you. Without them, this transition into my new role could have potentially had stumbling blocks. I am thankful for all their support and continuous encouragement.

Has there been anything that has surprised you about the job?​

I haven’t had any surprises yet! In my previous role I worked closely with the other team leader, so I was able to learn first hand what the expectations were, therefore it was easier to adapt to this role.

What would you say to other St Christopher’s staff who are thinking about going for a promotion?

Go for it! I would say you should make sure you are genuinely ready and also that you believe you will excel in the role you are applying for. It is essential to believe in yourself so that others will believe in you. It may be nerve-racking knowing the people interviewing you but have faith, have confidence, and believe the managers know you and only want you to do well. 

Check out our vacancies today to kickstart your children’s social care career.