“It’s always our aim to be the difference in someone’s life. It makes me feel so much better… and then I know I’ve done a great job.”
What makes my role nice nowadays is that it’s much more about having the right probation officers around to deal with individual service users. It used to be about service users coming into appointments and seeing different officers, but now we try our best to make sure that an officer is working directly with the SU and they’ve got that relationship, a reliable person to speak to.
Being able to direct service users to the right department is something were well known for here at MTC in Reading.
I turn up to appointments with a headspace that says I’m not going to be judgemental about everything that a service user has done. My job is all about sitting together and trying to resolve what we can do to avoid this from happening again. We come up with a plan, set objectives, and go from there.
It’s always our aim to be the difference in someone’s life. If a service user calls me and says, “Do you know what? I’ve got myself a job”, it makes me feel so much better… and then I know I’ve done a great job. Getting positive feedback from our service users builds up our confidence and driving us to deliver even more.
Service users look up to me, which I think is a good thing, because a lot of them have not had any direction in life… that’s the difference I want them to feel.
A lot of the time, service users have never had respect before, and I like to think that I’m the difference they need to inspire change in their lives.
I have lots of positive conversations with service users, and this is definitely where I feel like I’m able to be the difference they’re looking for.
We’re not in it for the money. Being the difference by making small changes in people’s lives is why we’re here.
My strength is that I’ve got a lot of patience, even in difficult situations, and I think that’s where I make a difference to people.