I have worked for Barnet Mencap and on our newsletter for over 12 years – now that I am leaving, I felt this was a good time to be featured on this page!
I’m from Essex originally, where I grew up in a little village with my mum, dad and sister. After university and then a year spent working for a disability and equalities charity in Leicester, I came back down South and started looking for a job. This is where I came across Barnet Mencap and joined as a Project Support Officer in July 2011 – at the time I definitely didn’t imagine sticking around for quite so long!
I have some family from the Barnet area so I knew the area a bit, but even to this day people ask me about bus routes around here and I have no idea!
Aside from a short stint living in Mill Hill, I’ve always lived a long way from our office, firstly in Bromley and nowadays Basildon, which means a 2-hour each way commute – which isn’t ideal!
After a few years being a Project Support Officer, I became the Communications Coordinator and then the Business & Strategy Manager, the role I’ve been in since 2021. These role changes definitely helped keep things interesting for me, and I learnt a lot along the way from my two previous line managers, Teresa and Hilary.
Outside of work, I love the cinema and go at least once a week; I also love going to the theatre when I can. My main hobby is cosplay. This is basically dressing up as characters from movies, TV shows, games etc for comic cons and events, but through this, I’ve met my girlfriend and most of my closest friends, who are spread across the country. It’s also given me some amazing opportunities like invitations to movie premieres and being featured in magazines and videos. I also support Tottenham, a habit I haven’t been able to kick over the years.
I’m leaving Barnet Mencap because I’m moving down to Plymouth, where my partner’s family are from. We’re buying a house with a garden for our dog, Chewie. We’ll be on the doorstep of the sea and of Dartmoor – Barnet and Basildon can’t really compete with that. I’m looking forward to not having that 2-hour commute eating into my cinema-going time in the evenings!
I want to end by saying thank you to all of my colleagues over the years, especially Ray and my team of Bhavini, Nadira, Nadia, Joby and Vicknes who I’ve loved working with. Also to the volunteers who’ve helped us out massively – to Annalie (who’s been here even longer than I have!), Shyam, Rona, Simon, Malti, Mansi and Sacha. I’ve become close to loads of people during my time here, some I’ve mentioned above, but also so many of the clients – who I’ve got to know well over the years – and their family members. I’ll definitely miss Barnet Mencap but wish everyone all the best for the future!
This Being… article originally appeared in our November 2023 newsletter.