I started my working life as an audio typist with Eagle Star Insurance and was there for 8 years before joining South Yorkshire Police. I was, in fact, the first woman police constable to join the new force in 1974, which had previously been Sheffield and Rotherham Constabulary. I left the Police Force just after getting married and went back to office work for a couple of years before leaving work to start my family.
When my daughter was old enough for me to go back to work, I answered an advertisement in the Star newspaper for an admin post with Home-Start UK (or Home-Start Consultancy, as it was then known). That was in 1989 and up until then I have never heard of Home-Start.
As soon as I began working for the organisation, I realised what a need there was for support for young families. There had been nothing like that when I was a new mum and needed support. After about 9 years of working for the national organisation, I was lucky enough to move to Home-Start Sheffield as a co-ordinator, in which job I remained until retiring in December 2008, just before my 60th birthday.
My experience with Home-Start has been fantastic. I have thoroughly enjoyed my working life with them and continue to do so as a Trustee. I have learned so much about all aspects of family life, some of which have been very different to my own experiences. Home-Start is a wonderful organisation and gives support to many different people.
I have recently become a Grandparent and my daughter has a lot of support from both sides of her family. It makes me remember and realise how hard it is to be a new parent and that not everyone has the support they need. Without Home-Start some families would have no support at all.
My interests include reading good books, learning to speak Spanish (very badly), walking in the countryside and socialising with friends. I am also looking forward to spending more time with my granddaughter, and as she grows, taking her out and sharing experiences with her.