Catherine Cobb, who works on Amey's Sheffield Streets Ahead account, writes about her first few months working for Amey with a disability…
I've come a long way
Just 18 months ago I was on benefits but now I’m building the career I’ve always dreamed of – thanks to the support and opportunities that Amey is able to offer.
I am a whole leg amputee – my entire left leg is missing up to the hip – and I have been like this since I was just seven-years-old. I have spent the last 15 years caring for my sister, who has special needs, but I was itching to get to work and get myself back into the career that I’ve always wanted.
Starting a new career
Having a degree in Mechanical Engineering and experience of working in Heavy Industry making alternators for bus engines, I was keen to start building a career in civil engineering. I was offered the job of Trainee Technician at Amey in Sheffield and my confidence immediately soared!
Since I started in my new position my confidence has grown and I can honestly say that I absolutely love every moment that I am here. I feel like I suddenly have my life back.
I work with a fantastic team of people with a great people manager, who have all been really accommodating and incredibly supportive. They really make me feel like a valued member of the team.
If I need to attend hospital appointments for my artificial leg or new crutches, it’s easy to make arrangements to do so and everyone understands. I also don’t really like wearing my artificial leg all the time as it can become quite uncomfortable, and the team has just accepted me without it!
Amey is also keen to help me work safely. They carried out risk assessments when I started in my new role and support me in certain circumstances. For example, if it snows I’m able to work from home, if there is a fire I have a fire buddy and I have a parking space reserved for me right outside the building.
As well as really enjoying my role and being surrounded by brilliant people, Amey is also committed to helping me build the career that I really want. I have just completed my Higher National Certificate (HNC) and I am now on the road towards completing my Higher National Diploma (HND) – something I could never have imagined happening just 18 months ago!
I’m looking forward to a future here and developing myself with the support of Amey, my people manager and the people that work on my contract. I want my story to demonstrate to people what an excellent employer Amey is and how included the people here make me feel, but to also show other disabled people that there is absolutely nothing stopping you from achieving what you want to!