As a full-time Training Coordinator for Pacific Homecare, Emmily Samuel has fully embraced the value of education.
New Zealand-born and of Cook Islands descent (Matavera in Rarotonga and the island of Atiu), Emmily worked as a warehouse packer for many years before deciding she needed a new lease on life.
That was in 2010 during the Global Financial Crisis, so finding a new job wasn’t easy. But through WINZ (Work & Income New Zealand) she eventually came across a Level 2 Training Programme for Support Workers. And she hasn’t looked back.
“An opportunity came up at Pacific Homecare. I’d never done anything like this, so I thought I’d give it a go.”
She started at Pacific Homecare in 2010. Emmily was solely a Support Worker during her first two years, but her welcoming smile and personality attracted the attention of management, who believed she could assist in their in-house training part-time with her Support Worker role.
“While I was really excited to get the opportunity, I missed my clients. You build strong relationships with them. Two of them have since passed away,” she says.
“But I love my current job because I’m learning all of the time and I’m doing things I never thought I’d get the opportunity to do.”
Emmily’s now a full-time Training Coordinator, she has completed her Assessor Training to assist and work with Field Coordinators with marking assessments.”
“The great thing about it is that I’m learning how to assess my own performance.”
She keeps herself even busier organising staff social activities.
Last year she organised a staff party for the first time, and also helped out with a graduation ceremony.
Working for Pacific Homecare enables her to strengthen her Cook Islands ties.
“Being New Zealand-born, unable to speak the Cook Islands language and having never been there until a few years ago, I didn’t feel as connected as I wanted to be,” she says.
“But I’m getting into my culture and my children are part of a Cook Islands dance group. I also love the fact we’re a Pacific organisation and everybody gets along, no matter where you come from.”
Emmily is particularly proud that the organisation she works for has strong Cook Islands roots, with Hamish Crooks at the helm.
“At my previous job you only saw the managers who worked directly above you, not the CEO. It’s so different at Pacific Homecare. That’s why I love it here.”
During her time at Pacific Homecare, Emmily has seen younger people enter the industry as Support Workers. The desire to upskill for herself and those entering the homecare industry provides further motivation.
“This is an industry for someone who has a heart and who is willing to make a positive difference to the lives of others. That’s what comes through with working for Pacific Homecare.”