Retail Operative, Smiles Newsagents, Certus
I was unemployed for three years until I got a job in the Smiles newsagent in the Certus building in Stephen’s Green. At 23 years of age, being out of work and on social welfare was not where I wanted to be. I never really wanted to go to college but have always liked working in the retail sector ever since my first job at 16. Getting the job in Smiles was great for me. It offered up new challenges. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do this and stand on my own two feet.
Working here has given me so many opportunities to develop new skills and to gain further responsibilities. I can now manage my own money and pay my own way at home. I understand completely the running of the shop, cash handling, stock ordering and all the tasks that are required day to day. I’ve met lots of new people and made lots of new friends.
Gaining this experience has been brilliant for me. I have a mild disability called Marsens Syndrome. You can’t see it but it affects my heart and eyesight. Living with a disability means that there are certain restrictions in life but coming to work for Smiles meant that these restrictions didn’t matter. I was given the support to come into this job and to be a part of a team.
I love working and every day I get the support that I need. I feel healthy and happy working here.