Jenny enters the workforce after a 22-year hiatus

Woman wearing a yellow polo shirt is smiling at the camera. She is standing in a garden.There’s nothing single mum Jenny wouldn’t do for her two sons. And that includes devoting her entire life to their needs.

Jenny’s 20-year-old son lives with global development delay, which has seen her pour endless time into ensuring he feels supported and loved, despite the challenges his disability presents.

As her WISE Employment case manager, Carly Bridger, says, “Jenny has been so busy advocating for her son, that she’s had no time to advocate for herself.”

It was when Jenny’s marriage ended last year, that she was forced to reassess her own professional career and ambitions. With no recent job history or skills to fall back on, she was extremely apprehensive about getting back into the workforce.

Although motivated to find a renewed sense of confidence to continue providing for her sons, Jenny found support through WISE and hasn’t looked back since.

“Through WISE, I finally rediscovered who I am and realised I’m not defined by my previous relationship or the life I had before.”

“I’ve realised I can still support my beautiful sons while carving out a career path of my own.”

Given Jenny hadn’t been in the workforce for some time, WISE connected her with Back2Work –  a program that assists some of the most disadvantaged job seekers build the confidence and skills they need.

Counselling Jenny personally, while supporting her with interview preparation and resume guidance, she’s now a valued member of Tradeflex, working as a cleaner at a local school.

Carly has noticed a tremendous change in Jenny since she’s entered the workforce, and says it’s done wonders for her self-esteem and overall disposition.

“When I first met Jenny, she was living quite an insular life – one consumed entirely by her sons, particularly to support her youngest with his disability. It meant she had little contact with the outside world, which made seeking employment after so long extremely daunting.”

“Now Jenny’s energy is infectious. She’s self-assured and is absolutely flourishing in her role,” says Carly.

Jenny’s story exemplifies the ways in which WISE Employment and the Back2Work program can help people rediscover who they are, even after some of the most challenging circumstances.

While Jenny’s previous marriage left her scarred in many ways, she’s now motivated, more than ever, to simultaneously look after herself as well as her family.

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