From cabin crew to Crowborough care home

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The team at Woodlands care home in Crowborough have welcomed a new employee who has changed his cabin crew career due to the impact of Coronavirus on the air industry.

Christian Rose, 51, joined Woodlands on Beacon Road in November following 15 years flying from Gatwick. Christian shares how he quashed negative social stereotypes about ‘caring’ roles, to embrace his new career in care.

Christian Rose photographed adjacent to a "Woodland" Sussex Housing & Care sign.

Christian said:

I never thought I’d be in a situation when I had to restructure my career, although I guess change is always a good thing.

The situation made me think about my skill set – I’m good at looking after people, know how to give excellent customer service, and have been trained in first aid and safety. These are all transferable skills suitable for a care assistant, although it’s not a requirement to have first aid training. Great I thought, however, I had to grapple with the unfortunate mislaid interpretation and negative stereotypes of working in care, was this role for me?

After thinking about my life and where I want to be, a career in care felt like a good choice. I moved to Crowborough and applied to become a night care assistant – mornings have never been my favourite! I have a close uncle who has dementia and I’ve learnt what he’s gone through, and also my aunt has worked in care, so I had their experiences to consider when applying for my new role.

I was fortunate to receive two job offers from different care homes and chose to begin my new career with Sussex Housing & Care at Woodlands care home in Crowborough because it’s not for profit – any profits made go back in to the organisation and this was a real attraction to me.

Christian is currently enjoying his induction, spending three weeks shadowing carers working in the day time, before he moves on to shadowing night carers for two weeks. Christian explained that he can have longer learning of the role if he needs to, before he becomes a fully-fledged night care assistant:

It’s all hugely new to me, I’m like a sponge soaking up water! Giving personal care isn’t daunting, it’s about respecting people and giving everyone the right to dignity. Society needs to look after and care for our elderly population. I have a genuine desire to care for people and look after them and this stands me in good stead in my new role.

I’m humbled and in awe of the people who work at Woodlands care home, their care and attention is so genuine. I’m learning fast and working together in a good team is fantastic. It’s a privilege to work here.

His message to others looking for a new career is to look beyond the stigma of ‘care’ and to give it a go. Think about the skills you have and how they’d be used to give care and show respect to older people.

If you’re considering a change of career, or are looking for an exciting care role within a friendly team who have residents at the heart of everything they do, please visit their website to find out more.

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