Published by Helping Hands on
23 December 2013
Rebecca Rijsdijk, Holland
Hi, I’m 29, from Holland and needed care myself when I had a stroke ten years ago. The nurses were my heroes, they pulled me through hard nights, encouraged me while I tried to put one foot in front of the other again and never complained about the mess I made when it was too hard for me to hold my own spoon. The day I got discharged I told them I was going to quit my journalism studies and either get into art or go to nursing school.
I got my degree in art and after that I decided to go to nursing school as well. I worked in a nursing home for a year and even though every one was trying their best, there were some things that bugged me there. With so many clients there, you hardly have any time to look after their social happiness which is just as important as brushed hair and clean nails. This made me decide to quit my job in Holland and move to the UK to become a live in carer instead. Helping Hands have been great to work for, I admire the fact that most of the office staff have also worked as carers, so they know what our job is all about – I think that says a lot about a company.
The Training course was so informative and actually quite fun, it was so nice to meet other likeminded people at the accommodation, I am still in contact with a couple of them, which is a major help during your first placement because they understand what you’re going through. What struck me the most is the passion the staff display and the fact that Tim, the CEO took the time to come down to the training facility to have a chat with us on our second day of Training. I really felt that they were there for us, even though we were firing loads of questions at them every day. I’ve just entered my fourth week into the first placement. It’s been quite the ride. I am caring for a lady with dementia and this has proved to be very challenging because every day is a new day and you have to get very creative sometimes in order not to agitate her.
You observe and you learn and sometimes you fall and you have a hard time getting up again. I am currently doing the online dementia course and it has proven to be very helpful so far. The recruitment team were lovely and my line manager helped me out a lot during the first week, she encouraged me and told me I was doing a great job and she listened to my ramblings. All the support I have had has helped me to improve my work with my customer, it’s still a challenge but I know I have lots of people backing me up when I get stuck. Everyone has been really wonderful.