How Work Experience Changed My Perceptions

People don’t realise the effect a pair of socks can have on someone who has just entered the country. 


On my first day of work experience at Upbeat Communities, I helped in English class. I was nervous, knowing that most of these people would only know a couple of English words. Over the week I understood how to communicate more efficiently but that first day was a struggle. We were learning about money and it struck me how little some knew about British currency. I saw how using physical objects like a 50p coin was really effective.

Later, I met a few families who had come from Syria. I was shy at first but seeing the family vibe made me feel more comfortable. Knowing that nearly everything had been taken from them except each other made me see that I take a lot for granted: shoes, for example. It really opened my eyes.


"Coming to Upbeat Communities for my work experience has changed me as a person. 

It’s pushed me into doing things that I maybe wouldn’t have done normally: helping in English classes, eating lunch with strangers, going into somebody’s house and giving them a Welcome Box."

A particular experience that made me see how valuable little things are was when we gave a Welcome Box to a woman who was twenty-five weeks pregnant. A hat and a pair of socks brought her to tears.

This week has shown me the struggle that people go through and the effort that others put in to improve their lives. It has changed my perceptions, and made me a better person.

Josh – written at the end of his work experience placement