Inspirational New Charter employee is a ‘housing hero’
Published by KBarnes for New Charter Housing Trust Group in Housing and also in Communities
A shining star from New Charter Homes’ debt advice team has been awarded ‘Inspirational Colleague of the Year’ in the 2012 Housing Heroes awards.
The prestigious awards recognise shining stars of the housing world at a national level, celebrating those who make a difference to others and a positive impact in their workplaces and communities every day.
The event is organised by Inside Housing magazine and the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), and attracted an amazing response with submissions from the length and breadth of the UK.
Debbie started work with Tameside-based housing association New Charter as a trainee debt advisor in 2009. Debbie hadn’t been able to work since 2003 due to critical health problems which cut short her ambitions of a management career. Her illness left her with long term mobility problems and she struggled to support herself financially.
With New Charter’s support, Debbie threw herself into her new role with passion and ambition to make a difference to the lives of others. She gained permanent employment with the housing group at the end of her traineeship.
Julie Vickers, director of business support said: “Debbie is an inspiring individual who always gives her all. She is a real team player who definitely likes a challenge whist being extremely supportive to her colleagues. Debbie sets a high standard for others to aspire to. She does not see barriers, only solutions, enabling her to deliver a first class service to customers.”
Debbie has previously been awarded the first Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH)/Habinteg Nicky Chapman Award in 2011 for best performing trainee, as well being the first trainee from the CIH’s Positive Action for Disability Scheme to gain permanent employment.
Many of Debbie’s clients are socially excluded and vulnerable. Debbie knows how this feels and never turns away a client who needs her help.
Commenting on her success, Debbie said: “The difference to my life since joining New Charter has been really significant.
“After becoming seriously ill in 2003 I found it a very difficult transition from working and building a career continuously from leaving school to being told you are not able to work and feeling like you have just become a part of the long term unemployment statistics.
“This becomes extremely demoralising and has a drastic effect on your life physically, mentally and emotionally.
“I have achieved something I had begun to believe would not be possible – getting back into employment. My illness and disability feel almost invisible while I’m at work.”
Debbie has continued to study alongside her career at New Charter and is working to convert her first class honours degree in Biomedical Sciences to a degree in housing. Debbie has completed a Level 3 certificate in Team Leading and aspires to embark on a Master’s degree in housing.