At Grapevine, we want people and communities to use their untapped power to create better futures. Employing a talented and diverse team of people who care about others is fundamental to helping us achieve this ambition.
Our latest story to mark 25 years of Grapevine is about team members Molly and Sam – who just happen to have celebrated their 25th birthdays this summer too!
To mark the serendipitous occasion, here’s a little bit about what makes working for Grapevine special for these two ladies.
Molly has worked here since 2017 and is currently spread across the Teenvine Plus, Coventry Youth Activists (CYA) and Warwickshire Empowerment Service projects. She is also just starting on our newest project on Compassionate Communities in Atherstone and Mancetter. She has a Level 3 BTEC and Foundation Year in Health and Social Care.
Sam came to Grapevine as a student Occupational Therapist on placement in 2016 and never left! She is currently on the H-Team and Warwickshire Empowerment Service projects. She has a first class degree in Occupational Therapy.
What attracted you to apply for a job at Grapevine?
Molly: When I was 17 I was a buddy on a young people’s project called Get In and I loved it. I actually got involved because I was looking for voluntary work but it became so much more and I made some great friends and had a lot of fun.
When I saw the Teenvine Plus role advertised I was working in social care for the local authority and loved the idea of being able to work with people in creative ways. I was particularly excited about the ‘youth democracy and citizenship group’ which has now grown into CYA.
What do you like most about your job?
Sam: Giving people, some of whom are from seldom heard groups, the skills and confidence to speak up and have a voice. Also that we work on a preventative basis rather than just when crisis hits. I think this is one of the reasons we are so unique.
Molly: Our jobs are so varied. Seeing people achieve things that either they thought they wouldn’t be able to or were told by society they couldn’t. I can’t help but miss people when they move on to great things but I know it’s because they feel confident to do it without our support and that’s great.
Is there a time you recall feeling like you’d made a real impact?
Sam: I worked on Help and Connect with a young man who was socially isolated and lacked confidence. I worked with him on what was important to him, what he wanted to achieve and why he was not engaging in these things. Due to his disability, his confidence was low and his Mum was very protective of him. Over time, we worked on activities that were meaningful to him with graded support and his self-esteem grew – so much so that he was well on his way to achieving his dream to become a rapper.
What are your hopes for the future for the people we work with?
Molly: I hope the work we do highlights to others to never make assumptions or underestimate someone. My hope for the people we work with is that they have the life they want and are in control of it. A life filled with opportunities and fun like anyone else’s and that includes being able to make mistakes – life is all about learning! As well as a good group of friends who are able pick them up when things aren’t so good.
Tell us a fun fact about you
Molly: I’m a terrible singer but I LOVE karaoke! Proud Mary by Tina Turner is my song of choice.
Sam: As a toddler, I hung onto a giraffe’s neck after it poked its head through our car sunroof on safari. My Mum had to pull me back in by my legs!