Tag Archives: training

Have you ever thought about a career in Early Years?

The Early Years Sector is a rewarding and vitally important sector which needs high quality staff at all levels. There are many exciting career options available, whether you are looking to work full-time, part-time or on a voluntary basis, with plenty of opportunities for training and progression.

If you have enthusiasm and enjoy working with young children and want to play a key role in supporting children’s learning and development, this could be the career for you.

The Early Years and Childcare Service can provide you with information about the different roles within early years, qualifications and training pathways and where to look for the latest jobs.

Contact us for a copy of our ‘Working in early years and childcare’ booklet  which has been designed to help you to make a more informed choice about your career options so that you feel confident about what steps to take next.

For Information on jobs, qualifications and training routes visit: www.devon.gov.uk/eycs, email: natalie.elston@devon.gov.uk or phone: 01392 385398.


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Filed under childcare, children, employment, self employment

Fancy doing some volunteering?

Voluntary work is a great way to learn new skills, make friends, and build your confidence, as well as adding to your CV and giving you a recent reference.  If you’re considering a career change, it can be a perfect way to try out a new role and show potential employers how dedicated you are to the new career.

There are lots of fantastic opportunities to get involved with volunteering.  The Do-it website is a great place to start.  If you’re already involved with a local organisation that you’d like to support, then you could ask them directly about volunteering opportunities.  Pre-schools, playgroups, schools, and Children’s Centres often need all kinds of volunteers, from receptionists, to gardeners, as well as roles that are more involved, such as playwork or breastfeeding peer support.  Most charitable organisations will be looking for people to help out with fundraising – from selling raffle tickets, to events organisation.

Here are some organisations that we have identified that offer voluntary positions that we think will be of interest to Mums in particular:

Home Start is a national charity, supporting families that are finding it difficult to cope.

Balloons is an Exeter based charity, supporting children who are dealing with bereavement

Real Nappy Advisors help new Mums get to grips with reusable nappies.  In many areas this involves providing a trial kit for a month and supporting the parents in using the nappies and deciding on the best options for them.  This goes well alongside a real nappy retail business, as the family is then offered a discount voucher if they buy from you (refunded to you by the local council).  Read blog posts from local nappy brand, Eccobots, and retailer, The Natural Nursery.

Breastfeeding Peer Supporters help new Mums deal with the many issues they can face with breastfeeding.  They can volunteer within Children’s Centre groups, and in hospital maternity wards in some areas.  Training is usually undertaken through the local Children’s Centre, and locally has been done through Healthy Babies UK.

Have you done any voluntary work?  What sort of voluntary work would you consider doing?

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Filed under charity, childcare, employment, Inspirational Women, retraining, work-life balance

Women V Cancer

In 2011, Michelle Manders, mother to Lucas, was diagnosed with cervical cancer aged just 25.  Thankfully this has been treated and she has now been given the all clear.  Michelle will be cycling across Cuba in October 2013 to raise money for three cancer charities (Breast Cancer Care, Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, Ovarian Cancer Action).  She has already raised £1610 of her £2900 target and is busy fundraising and training.

I am doing a cycle across Cuba to help raise money for the three very important charities that Women v Cancer are supporting.  In November 2011 I was diagnosed with cervical cancer, at the age of 25 this was the last thing I thought would happen!  After many appointments and small operations at Torbay hospital and Exeter hospital, I was told I would need further treatment.  I was referred to St Bartholomews hospital in St Paul’s, London for a much more major and specialist operation – a ‘Radical Tracalectomy’ and also to have my ‘Lymph nodes’ removed.  After a long 11 days in hospital recovering and a few further problems I was eventually allowed home, being told I would receive my full results in two weeks time.  Thankfully on the 21st march 2012 I was told that the tracalectomy got all of the cancer and I was cancer free and could finally get on with my life and no more treatment was needed, just regular check ups.

Michelle on her wedding day

Following this, I went to Paphos in Cyprus in September last year and married my husband, who has been there for me throughout all of this.  I’m now enjoying spending lots of quality time with my little boy, Lucas.  Everything I have been through in the last 18 months has inspired me to do something to help these well deserved charities in raising money to help people like myself and also people less fortunate then me who require more treatment.
To support my fitness throughout my training I have been going to a military bootcamp class. ‘Phys Group’ run various levels of bootcamp classes and I often do most of them to try to build up my fitness ready for Cuba!  Physgroup ethos is to provide fun, social, interactive and effective outdoor military fitness suitable for all abilities.  For class times and more information please visit phys bootcamp or phys walk.

You can support Michelle and make a donation to Women V Cancer through Michelle’s page on Just Giving.

We wish you the very best of luck in Cuba Michelle!

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Filed under charity, Inspirational Women