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Coaching, Mentoring & Supervision with One Step Further

Before I start to explain why these three methods of support are so important to me, indulge me a little and let me tell you about my career path.


It's only been in the past decade that I've really appreciated the support I had in the early days of my career, and even then I only thought about it because while attending a coaching session myself I was asked, "Who is the person who had the most impact on your current career?" I could answer that immediately, it was a Youth Leader by the name of Dave Silcox based at Lanfranc Youth Wing in Croydon. In the days before Children's Centres had even become the "new Government initiative" we had on our door step the most fabulous facilities.  All on the site of a secondary school was a drama studio, sports hall, community coffee bar, huge outdoor area, and Dave made sure that building was open for as many feasible hours of the day as he possibly could, facilitating everything from a Mother & Toddler group to a Silver Strands group for the elderly and every conceivable age group in between.  Monday - Sunday 8.00 - 10.00 something magical happened, and although we didn't realise it at the time it gave many of us a solid career path for which we are eternally grateful.

I  met Dave when I joined the Mother & Toddler group, he told me the Youth Wing was like a vacuum cleaner that sucked you inside and wouldn't let you out, he was right, I spent 8 very happy years working alongside him and learning from the best. 

Dave soon had me volunteering to help at summer playscheme and junior youth club, and as well as enjoying being with the children I loved the opportunities of being able to talk to the other staff and volunteers. Before every session was a briefing, after a debriefing, termly we would plan the next playscheme, the numbers grew, the children grew and we grew as a team because of all the hidden coaching and mentoring sessions we probably didn't even realise we were having.  I clearly remember being asked at every meeting, "What are you going to going to do with the children next week" and it seemed no matter what I suggested Dave would ask "Why".  "Why" was because I knew they would enjoy themselves, but Dave would want to know, what will they learn from this, what will be the next steps, what might they talk about, what wounds could this open for them, how will you deal with their feelings, will they be in or out of their comfort zone. As time progressed Dave began to send me on training courses and encouraged me to take my first NVQ, eventually I went on to become Playscheme Manager, then Wrap Around Care Development Officer for Croydon and eventually Deputy Director of Training where my role was to recruit Childcarers - all because one man knew I cared enough about my role to make sure others succeeded in theirs.

It's something that never left me, and my own staff teams will talk about the fact that very few of them began their career with me as qualified staff, I much preferred to take Dave's view that if someone was motivated and passionate enough to want to work with children, they would learn alongside the children.  So I made sure everyone had access to training and, if they were training, they needed coaching to explore the "what next", mentoring to explore the "why do I", and supervision to explore the "where have I been and where am I going".

So there you have the explanation of why my coaching, mentoring and supervision styles are relaxed and informal, challenges are important but only as important as those you are setting yourself,  One Step Further will always take you forwards and on the days when it feels that you're standing still, together we can work on your routine.

Coaching sessions are available for life skills as well as employment skills, helping you to overcome stressful situations, achieve success and replace "I wish" with "I can"  Sessions available  in groups or on a one:one basis

And one more thing, I will never make you do anything in a session that you aren't comfortable with, however, if you tell me you can't, I will  ask you "But, what would it look like if you could" ......................" I don't want fear to hold you back, when we could work together to find a way for your fear to push you forward.


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