Tell us about your background

I grew up in the north east of Scotland, where I went to Fraserburgh College to study Media and Journalism. Once I had finished my course I was applying for different opportunities and I came across the role with Penumbra by chance really.

What made you want to work for a Mental Health Charity?

I have always had an interest in psychology, and really wanted a job where I could make a difference and help people, that is why this is the perfect role for me.

Tell us about the Project you work on?

At this project we support 11 people who live in their own flats. Everything we do is recovery focused. We are always there if people are unsure of certain situations, we support them to get involved, and help them to gain independence.

What does a typical day at work for you involve?

It is hard to describe a typical day at Penumbra, because no day here is really the same. The first thing I do when I get to work is check the diary and make plans for the day. Duties are really varied and can involve everything from helping people to take their medication, going to appointments with them, or helping them get out into the community – days out, going to theatre, playing pool, or even supporting them whilst they are on holiday!

I am a key worker for two people, and I also support other people across the project.  As a key worker I am responsible for the paperwork and I also make use of Penumbra’s outcome focused tools, like I·ROC, to promote their recovery. We are encouraged to use our initiative and think differently when we are making plans for the people we support.

Shifts at this project are varied, and can include 9-5 shifts, night shifts, and evening shifts. I currently work a mixture of these on a full time basis.

What do you enjoy about working at this project?

No day is the same here, and I get to work with different people. It is really rewarding seeing people we support progress and improve, our aim is always for people to live independently and eventually move on from the project when they are ready. The team here all get on really well and we all support each other.

What makes Penumbra a great place to work?

There is a relaxed atmosphere here, everyone works well as a team, and we are all supportive of each other. I have also had some brilliant training. In my first six months I was on four training courses and I also have new ones scheduled in the diary for the coming months.

Everything we do is recovery focused and I really enjoy supporting people to move forward – its great to see the progress they make. Our managers always encourage us to use our initiative and be proactive and they are always open to new ideas.

How would you describe your job in three words?

Exciting, Rewarding, Challenging.