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A Day in the Life – Carolyn Smoult, Navigator

Infographic of Carolyn's day featuring the library, laptop, phones and conversation

“The first job of the day is to check my emails and messages and send messages via text or email to my appointments of the day just as a reminder.  As usual there are a few emails that need some action before my first appointment. Some days we have a team meeting where I catch up with the team, talk about new opportunities and share any challenges but today I travel straight to the Library where I have an interview room booked for the day to hold my appointments.

9:30                        I meet with my first appointment, who’s starting a hospital work experience placement tomorrow. We go over some things that are causing him concern and I reassure him that the Senior Manager of the placement area is keen to meet with him, really liked his CV and thought his qualifications made him an ideal candidate. My participant has suffered with mental health issues since both of his parents passed away and he lacks confidence in himself. He’s been attending Interview Skills and Confidence courses that I placed him on, to help with this. He promises to text me tomorrow to let me know how the first day has gone.

I reminded him to keep his travel tickets so I can reimburse him as finances are a huge barrier for him.

I record all of this data on our systems before my next appointment.

11:00                     Meet with a participant who has recently had an interview for a Managers job of a new Charity Shop. She’s really excited to tell me SHE GOT THE JOB and starts on Friday!! We need to sort out travel expenses and some work clothes for her, so she is smartly dressed and ready to start. We complete the project paperwork. She’s been unemployed for 9 years due to a health condition that affects her vision, but she was determined to start work and earn a salary again. Great news!! Makes all the time put in worthwhile.

12:00                      Grab a bite to eat and upload documents and input some more data before my next appointment due in at 1.00pm

1:00                        Next appointment is a new referral and I like to have an informal meeting to introduce myself and make sure that the person is eligible. I sort out the necessary paperwork and ID and verify what benefits they are receiving and make another appointment for next week. The paperwork and ID etc. will have been verified by then. I catch up with telephone calls and emails that have gathered during the morning.  Today there is the usual diverse range of issues including an email from a client who has decided to apply for a job that I spotted and passed on to her yesterday. I will support her to make an application at our next meeting. Return a few telephone messages from my colleagues all looking for some advice. Everyone in my team has good experience in lots of different areas so we are always talking to each other when we need some help.  I input more data and update my calendar with new appointments for the weeks ahead and email the managers of the venues where I’d like to book rooms for the appointments.

2:30                        I do a little research on a medical condition that I haven’t heard of before – Anderson Tawil Syndrome – it is a lifelong condition and effects the muscles, as I’m meeting a new referral at 3 who has this condition

3:00                        I meet with my final participant of the day, a young gentleman who has the medical condition and he’s really pleased that I’d done some research on this. It’s a very rare condition. He’s only 19 and hasn’t worked yet since leaving school but his condition has affected him all his life, bullied at school and unhappy times with lots of hospital stays meaning he missed a lot of schooling too.

We discuss his hopes and aspirations and talk about some volunteering that I think would be beneficial to him.

I complete more paperwork and we make an appointment for next week.

4:30                        I call a participant to discuss our arrangements for tomorrow. She needs some reassurance, and I will accompany her to the first day of her training. She won’t always need this, but it is her first time in a learning setting in a lot of years so having a friendly face while she settles in helps.  The final job of the day is to record information about the work that I’ve done.  I write up notes about today’s meetings, transfer paperwork to client files, and record all the direct client work that I’ve done on a database for our project funders.

5:30                        Head home, tired but had a good day.”

 

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