Jane’s story

Eikon Receptionist and Administrator

I retired as a secondary school teacher after the pandemic. My role in school had changed more from teaching Science to supporting students with SEN. I saw increasing numbers of young people needing support with their mental health much of which, despite our best efforts, was beyond what we could offer in school. They needed help from professionals trained more specifically in supporting mental health, and it often seemed we had nowhere to go to get that help.

I found Eikon in a search online for jobs to do with young people, and from what I read on the website the ethos of the charity, the early intervention, and the positive stories from the young people supported by Eikon drew my attention. I emailed to see if there was a role I could fulfil on a part-time basis to contribute in any way to the work done by Eikon. I was interviewed very quickly, and offered the post I now fulfil as afternoon Receptionist and Administrator.

Even though I only work a few hours a week, I’m still made to feel valued and I really enjoy coming into work.

When people ask me what I do, I say I’m privileged to be paid to talk to people – be it other members of the staff, volunteers, parents, or young people. As I often see the same parents coming in every week, we chat and I get to know them.

I saw one of these parents in a church at Christmas time, while she was watching her child taking part in a carol concert. She came straight over to me to tell me how her child was getting on, telling me how well they were now doing. Even though I had played a very small part, it was lovely to hear how Eikon had obviously helped this young person and in turn her Mum through a difficult time, and to see how happy they now both seemed.

My message to young people is – One of the bravest things you can ever say is “Help”.

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