Through volunteering I met lots of other women, and began to interact in the community more. That led to me starting to feel more active, happy and confident.Akifa
Having been a full time mum for 10 years, I wanted to feel like I was part of the system again, and eventually get a part time job while my children are at school. To do this I needed to get back into the circulation and start a new routine. I wanted to improve my skills, learn something new and enhance my confidence and feel valued, like I was part of something again.
But at first I found that there was too much of a gap from my previous routine and the workplace, looking after the children and staying at home. Although I had a good education and felt I had lots of skills to offer, my work-gap had meant I wasn’t familiar with the advancement of technology. I felt a bit out of it, as if I’d been away too long. I believed that knowledge without practice is incomplete.
The team at Local Women Local Enterprise gave me the encouragement and support I needed to put the skills I knew I had into practice, and I also received training on how to use the databases, new software, and was given responsibility to update the database.
I started to feel like I was being valued - I felt like I was part of a team again.
Within my role I’m also able to support other women to become involved in Local Women Local Enterprise, and as I’m part of the local ethnic community, I feel like I understand the barriers that a lot of women like me are facing. And there’s something inside of me that wants to help them too - I can understand their situations as I have been through it too.
Volunteering with the project also meant that I was able to become aware of other local organisations, which I am now also volunteering with.
local women - seeing how actively they have participated, and how they have found opportunities for the future.
The work experience I have gained through the Local Women Local Enterprise charity project will hopefully lead to me working with local minority groups in the community sector in the future.
My message to inspire other local women:Akifa
"Never give up, Just keep trying. Everyone is valuable in their own way. Believe in yourself and you can achieve anything in this world."