John Broadhurst, North Dales Reablement Team, Richmondshire

Like other apprentice-trained workers, John Broadhurst could have expected to spend his entire career in the printing industry he worked hard to join. 

But health complications forced him to look elsewhere at an age where some would be looking towards retirement and he has made a success of a start to a second career in care with North Yorkshire. 

John, aged 57, is only months into the role with the North Dales re-ablement team - which provides short term assistance for those who need help over a range of issues - but has already got the qualifications and experience to allow him to work alone. 

Within the next 12 months he also hopes to gain a diploma in health and adult social care. 

The Northern Echo: "The learning is extensive but it is rewarding" - John Broadhurst"The learning is extensive but it is rewarding" - John Broadhurst

Support from colleagues and managers in his team have been an important asset in getting to grips with his new career. 

Decades after completing his printing apprenticeship, he accepts there has been a lot to learn in his new job. 

But he has found the challenges rewarding and enjoys the opportunity to work with new people. 

In reality, his caring career could have started earlier because while he saw the advertisements and found the prospect appealing, he assumed he may be too old to be considered. 

The opposite was true and when he did put in an application, it won him an interview. Within a short time of completing what he described as “one of the most difficult hours of my life” he got a call back with an offer - and the personal compliment that he was expected to fit well into the team of supportive colleagues.

“The learning is extensive but it is rewarding and I am well into the studies for my diploma and am receiving good feedback on that,” he said. 

“The team and my manager are all helpful and my confidence in the role has continued to increase. 

“A lot of the hard stuff has already been completed,” he said. 

That means he now has the skills, experience and confidence to work unsupervised, with the opportunity to gain qualifications for further career development. 

Age has proved no barrier to switching into the care sector with the County Council, proving that life experience, coupled with a willingness to learn and an enthusiasm for helping those in need can be a satisfying combination for a career switch.