Starting work later in life – How Jane found her calling

Being a carer is a selfless and rewarding task, but sometimes it means putting our own lives on hold for the sake of our loved ones. That was the case for Jane, who had spent the majority of her adult life caring for her husband and had never had a paid job.

Jane was always active in her local community, volunteering with Torus at the children’s activities in Four Acre. So when we started running new activities in her local area, including a healthy cooking course and a weekly jobs club, we reached out to see if she was interested in getting involved.

As it happens, Jane’s two daughters were both on the look out for jobs, so they agreed to come along to the job club to see how we could support them. One daughter had already secured an interview, so we helped her with interview prep, as well as funding for her DSB, transport and appropriate workwear. Jane’s other child was just starting her job seeking, so we were able to support her with her job applications. Shortly after, she was invited to interview and, just like her sister, was offered the job.

When Jane started attending the job club, it was to support her daughters. But quickly, Jane started to open up to us about her own financial situation. Her husband’s ESA benefits and her own Carer’s Allowance were being reviewed. This, along with her daughter’s child benefits coming to an end, meant the household’s income had been decreased significantly.

With no traditional work experience, and nothing on her CV, not to mention her concerns about leaving her husband for periods of time, the prospect of returning to work was a daunting one. But after talking through her transferable skills and lived experience, she soon realised she had a lot to offer an employer.

With the support of the job club, Jane started applying to roles. Unsurprisingly, Jane was successful at her very first interview and started work at Home Instead.

If you are a Torus tenant and would like to find out what employment support is available to you, don’t hesitate to contact the team.