I live at home with my two sons, aged two and four. I am lucky enough to have my sister next door but one and my mum (granny) just around the corner too. I also have support from my ex mother-in-law and now that I am on division I have welcomed a new nanny into the family too.
I spent three years as a stay-at-home mum, before which I spent more than 11 years in child protection working with vulnerable children and their families. I worked closely with the police over those years while dealing with incidents around domestic abuse, missing children and mental health crisis. I wanted to progress my career and considered where I could use my skillset in a new role.
When I looked into the police it sang to me and I knew I would be able to use my skills for good.
The application process was not without difficulties as I applied weeks before the first Covid 19 lockdown and the whole process was forced to quickly change but there was a lot of support from College of Policing as well as the Cambs Recruitment Team. I invested a lot of time in researching the role and preparing for all aspects of the application process and I would really encourage anyone to do the same.
I have loved the training process despite the difficulties that came from learning on Teams and can only imagine how much more you will love the training period when back in the classrooms. My highlights were spending time in the dojo on Personal Safety Training, Police Support Unit training and search training.
The exams and assessed roleplays gave a taste of working under pressure but I prepared well and managed to juggle that alongside being a single mum.
When I started on division I was welcomed by my team and enjoyed putting everything I’d learnt into practice. I was a mixture of nerves and excitement but I kept busy by planning out the logistical side of things, particularly childcare, ensuring I incorporated sleep as well as parenting and the actual hours.
I put a lot of pressure on myself to get everything right from day one but I soon realised I would be supported and expected to continue learning over my tutorship.
That’s what it’s all about and questions are always encouraged. You definitely need to be resilient for this job. I was pleased that this was never sugar-coated from day one so we knew to expect to be working late, few breaks and difficult situations ranging from conflict to potentially traumatic jobs.
Whilst there are plenty of challenges there is a lot to love about the job too. I love doing active work out and about in the community, going to exciting situations and knowing every day is going to be different. I love being part of a team and feel really positive about how I am picking things up so far.
I already feel like I have made a difference by helping people and whilst not every job we are sent to is as satisfying as that, it really does make it all worthwhile when we can make positive change.
I can see how far I have come and feel great about the future.