Chances are if you bump into Carmen Cargill at Community Care Durham’s Clarington Hub, she’ll be smiling.
These days, Carmen is happy, having made significant life changes. One of those changes is coming to work at CCD after spending almost 17 years in the telecommunications industry.
“When this opportunity came up (working at CCD), I felt like it was a sign. Working where I live, supporting a community that I love, and working with seniors, have always been a hidden passion of mine,” Carmen said.
Carmen previously worked at TELUS Mobility as an HR professional in Talent Acquisition. While she loved the company, the work pulled her away from her family, which took an emotional toll on her.
“For 10 years, before I decided to resign, I was unhappy,” she said. “The company was great. The company was amazing. I will always say that. I will always be a TELUS customer, but for me, there was only so much that I could do.”
After months of talking about it with her husband, they decided it was better for Carmen to resign and take some time for herself to figure out what’s next.
It was the best decision of her life.
“It just got to a point where I was miserable,” Carmen said. “When my husband walked in the door, all he had to do was look at me and know it was another bad day. I was overwhelmed and just stressed out.”
Carmen resigned from TELUS and focused on the important thing in her life – family. They travelled a bit (they are a Disney family and love to go to Florida whenever possible) and were able to enjoy time together. Her kids finally had her full attention, and she could be there in the moment with them.
Then, Carmen’s mother was diagnosed with dementia last fall. It gave her comfort knowing she could be there to support her mom and dad.
“There’s a silver lining in all situations. That was my silver lining: I was home and could be there and be there for them,” she said.
In January, Carmen was ready to work again. But she didn’t want to return to corporate work. She wanted something different.
“I was miserable throughout my 30s, and I turned 40 last year, and I didn’t want to go into my 40s being unhappy. I knew what I didn’t want and that was going back to corporate at this stage in my life, but also was open to what else that meant for me,” she said.
That’s when she saw a CCD job posting for a Hub assistant. She applied, got the job, and started in early April.
Carmen says she enjoys helping people, which in many cases is problem-solving.
“When you help someone, they’re genuinely appreciative, and that alone is amazing,” she said.
Another bonus of working at CCD is more family time. Carmen is five minutes away from her Bowmanville home, and when she leaves work, she doesn’t have to worry about being tethered to her phone.
“Time home with my kids and my husband, when it’s the four of us, it’s always good. We could be doing everything or doing nothing, and it’s good.”
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