I come from India, where I graduated in psychology and also did a post-graduate diploma in computer applications. I then worked in Delhi for 12 years. In 2005 my wife, a nurse, had the opportunity to come and work in the UK, so we moved over here. I had to start again from scratch as a domestic assistant in a nursing home. I heard about Sussex Partnership and, with my background in psychology, I decided to join as bank staff in the dementia ward. I’ve always enjoyed caring for people.
We had a great manager in the dementia ward and she recognised I could do more and suggested I join the Trust permanently. I was given the opportunity to do my nursing training via the Open University, funded by the Trust. I could work alongside my studies and support my family. It’s been an unusual journey to qualification, but I’ve met lovely people, who have supported me through my studies.
Fir ward is a low secure ward for males aged 18 and upwards, so it’s good to get people outside. In my spare time I am a qualified football referee and I bring my refereeing experience to work, too. We run sporting activities and set up football matches between the wards, so I am a referee on the inside and on the outside! If someone is showing challenging behaviour on the ward, I tell them they might get shown a red card… a sense of humour works well here.
I’m always impressed with the team because they are highly professional and passionate about patient care. The support level in my first six months was fantastic and now I’m qualified, it’s still there. The team makes me proud because they’ve built such a rapport with the patients. There is a friendly atmosphere, you see people enjoying themselves, it feels friendly, not like a hospital. Everyone joins in with occupational therapy and sport and it’s brilliantly managed.
It’s a great place to work because of the atmosphere, the security and the opportunities to grow. Joining Sussex Partnership was the moment my life turned around. There is no limit to my expectations here. Eventually I would love to do a doctorate in psychology. I’ve met the best people on my journey and am still in touch with those I have met along the way.