Ronnie’s Fond Farewell
Well this week I have another guest blog. This one is from Ronnie my support worker who is leaving for pastures new after 4 years.
I will of course be sad to see Ronnie go. But it is fantastic that he has a new job. Not only to support him with his future plans. But it will also mean he gets a few more minutes in bed in the mornings as he won’t have to drive to Norwich. What more could he want!
I thank Ronnie for all the work he has done. All the laughs and disasters we have had during our time working together, and wish him well for the future.
But for now I will hand over this blog to the man himself Ronnie Hatt….
And now from Ronnie…
My time at Equal Lives began when friends and future colleagues of mine, Russell and Tom asked if I would like to volunteer in the Community Engagement Team. And what a team it was! Very supportive, positive and enthusiastic. It was the perfect place for me to build confidence, refresh my IT skills and get used to the workplace.
Then the opportunity to work with Penny came up. After much encouragement from Penny herself, and many others in the team, I put myself forward for the job of Support Worker. Luckily for me Penny felt I was the best candidate, and the rest is history.
Over the near enough 4 years I have worked with Penny (not forgetting Betty and Winnie), I have seen, done and experienced things I never thought I would (the raffle prizes at the D.I.S.S group being a particular favourite!). Plenty of laughs and some sad times. Travelling the length and breadth of Norfolk, visiting Member groups and other organisations and attending events. Perhaps stopping at the odd chip shop or bakery along the way (perks of the job!). Plus being part of many different projects. And hopefully making a difference to the lives of disabled people in Norfolk, however small.
I have learnt so much about disability and disabled people, accessibility and equality (unfortunately it is still lacking in many parts of our county, and the wider country).
Without Penny’s support, (whilst I was supporting her) I would not be where I am today. She has pushed me to do things and to try (however resistant I may have been!) new things, seeing my potential from the very beginning.
The advantage of working one to one with someone, not only do you have a professional relationship, you become friends and that is very important.
Although we have to have formal meetings, if there was ever a problem we would talk about it often on the road on the way to another meeting.
To avoid waffling on any more, I would like to end by saying I will be very sad to leave Penny and Equal Lives. But the time has come for me to move on. I will be working as a receptionist at the BTO (British Trust for Ornithology). They carry out very important studies and research on, not only our native birds but mammals, reptiles, insects and amphibians.
Long may the work of Equal Lives continue providing vital support and guidance for disabled people in Norfolk.