Friday, January 04, 2008

Susan Morley - Reception and Signposting Co-ordinator, Northern Refugee Centre

How old are you?

What’s your occupation and who do you work for?
Reception & Signposting Co-ordinator, Northern Refugee Centre, Sheffield

How long have been doing this?
9 months

What is it about your job that makes it ethical?
At Northern Refugee Centre we work very hard at being fair, honest and environmentally friendly. We also make sure that we are non-judgemental and try to treat everyone as equal regardless of their race, religion, sexuality, political beliefs etc according to our Equal Opportunities policies.

What’s the best bit about your job?
Being able to help an asylum seeker or refugee to make their life better in whatever way they need us to. I have also learned an incredible amount about different cultures and countries.

What’s the worst thing?
Being sworn at by frustrated and angry clients and never having enough time.

What have the last 12 months been like for you?
Very stressful and a very steep learning curve.

What were you doing before this?
I was the Office Manager at Northern Refugee Centre.

What was your very first full-time job?
Youth Opportunities Scheme job in a community theatre company.

What advice would you give to someone wishing to embark on the same sort of work as you?
It’s not easy and you have to be passionate about the sector that you are working in to make it easier to balance the stress with being able to make a difference to peoples lives. It’s also important to have a clear understanding of their issues to enable you to effectively deal with people and how their situation affects them and their lives. Being a ‘people person’ definitely helps!

Have you got any plans for the next 12 months you’d like to share with us?
I wish to learn more about the countries of origin of our clients to gain a better understanding of why they have ended up in the UK and what they have fled from. I also want to do some training around the best way to deal with difficult clients.

What do you do to relax?
Walk my dogs.

Who do you live with?
My partner and 2 children

Whereabouts do you live?

If you were Prime Minister, what’s the very first thing you would do?
I would allow asylum seekers to work (and in fact, provide support to help them find decent employment)

As cheap and easily available oil is expect to run out in the next couple of decades, what do you think will be the predominant form of transport in 2027?
I have no idea.

Have you got any guilty carbon secrets?
I don’t always recycle as much as I should. I am also guilty of not switching things off (eg phone chargers, speakers on the pc, tv at the mains)

What have you done that you were most proud of?
Raised 2 beautiful children who care about people and are empathetic. Work wise, I know I am a friendly face who clients who are (hopefully) put at ease when they come to our service and are assured that I will do my best to make sure they are given the help they need.

What single issue are you most concerned about in the world at large?

Which person in the public eye do you most admire and why?
Can’t think of anyone

What’s your website address?

What are your three favourite other websites of the moment?

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