When considering a new career, care didnâ€™t seem like an obvious choice for former submariner Andrew Heath but he has shown it can be a rewarding job with lots of opportunities.
When Andrew joined Kingdom Homes Work Academy programme little did he or anyone else imagine that in four years he would become manager of the companyâ€™s Preston House Nursing Home in Glenrothes.
The Work Academy is a six-week programme run by Kingdom Homes in partnership with Skills Development Scotland and the Department of Work and Pensions. It is open to people interested in a career in care of the elderly.
Andrew was looking for a career change and thought he would like the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the elderly residents he would be caring for. During Andrewâ€™s placement his potential became obvious to his mentors and management with the result that they offered him a permanent position as a care assistant at Preston House at the end of the six weeks.
A promotion to senior care assistant followed Â a couple of years later and he was appointed to lead the reablement unit in Preston House, which takes people discharged from hospital and gives them the support they need until they are able to return to their own homes. Heading up this small unit helped Andrew develop his leadership skills.
In 2015 Andrew became assistant manager at Preston House, gaining valuable experience supporting the manager. He also delivered training and assisted managers of other care homes in the group.
Andrewâ€™s work life before joining Kingdom Homes ranged from being a submariner with the Royal Navy to management positions in the food and drink and furniture manufacturing industries. The variety of experience gained in previous roles has helped him develop his new career in care.
Andrew has now climbed another rung on the ladder with his appointment as manager of Preston House, the same 60-bedroom nursing care home he started out in just four years ago. He is looking forward to the challenges of his new role and says that every day in care is different. Andrew is committed to providing a very person-centred approach for each and every one of the residents at Preston House and supporting and developing the staff team. Andrew is currently progressing through formal management qualifications relevant to his role.
â€˜The support from my colleagues and the training provided by Kingdom is excellent, it ensures we are able to provide the best possible care and appreciate our residents as people.
â€˜Moving forward in my new role, the support from Kingdom Training for my team and for myself will be invaluable, there is quite often a new practice or process in this industry that we have to engage with, and I know itâ€™s the ongoing training and refresher sessions that enable us to react and deliver as a home and a company.
â€˜I know I couldnâ€™t have achieved this without the training, support and guidance that I get from Kingdom Training.â€™
Care in Scotland â€“ itâ€™s life changing work
We have lots of other stories on our website. They tell you what itâ€™s like working in social care and why they find it a rewarding career.
Find out more about the different types of roles people have working in social services by catching up with their stories.