Changing career after redundancy: ask the expert

I have been made redundant, but want to change career. I work in publishing, but I would like to do something working with children with learning difficulties. However, I have no money to retrain. How can I go about this without having to start at the bottom rung, which I can’t afford?

This is a difficult predicament as often the thing we most want to do is not the most practical. It seems from what you have written that retraining is out of the question right now. I am sure you yourself have thought around the problem, but below I have suggested a few things – please forgive me if you have already explored these avenues.

I would start by looking at all the things you can do:
– How much do you know about training to work with children with learning difficulties? Have you researched all the options and do they all cost the same, or take the same amount of time?
– Is it something that you could get funding to do, or a grant of some sort?
– Could you fit training round a job that pays what you need to be earning currently?
– If you can’t actually retrain to do this as a career right now, could you find a way of working with children with learning difficulties on a voluntary basis?
– Have you spoken to someone who is already doing the job you would like to be doing and asked their advice?

Working with children with learning difficulties is clearly something that will give you more of what you want in life. Without asking you directly, I imagine that it is maybe a sense of doing something incredibly worthwhile, something very rewarding, something that will bring joy to yourself and others. If you can’t do this job now to give you more of those things, can you think of something else that you could be doing now that would?

Is there a way that you could combine your current expertise in publishing with your interest in children with learning difficulties? Maybe there is a charity that helps such children and families where your current skills and interests would be of real benefit.

You say that you are looking to change career. If, right now, you can’t pursue what you would really like to, there maybe be a ‘stepping stone’ job out there that would take you in the direction you want to go in, but that pays what you need. When, later down the line, the time is right to retrain to work with children with learning difficulties, the job you did in the mean time was heading you in the right direction.

I hope this is of help. I wish you all the best.

Comments [1]

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi A further thought….my son and some other children at our local primary school get additional 121 support at school to support various learning needs. He and others are supported brilliantly by one of the Teaching Assistants who has specialised training to provide this additional support. I know that she finds this work very rewarding (as well as being a very special person in the eyes of my son) – this kind of work may be another avenue for exploration re. voluntary / future employment particularly as many Teaching Assistants start out in a voluntary capacity ….

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