From Hairdressing to The Haven – Harriet’s career change story.

Harriet Cranfield Salutem Care and Education

Starting her career in Care with us just over half a year ago, Harriet Cranfield, Youth Support Worker, went from hairdressing to The Haven when she was furloughed in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Ever since I was young, I’ve always wanted to work with children, but thought that the only way to do so would be going down the education route. I did work experience at a school but didn’t enjoy it, so instead decided to follow my friends into hairdressing which I loved! Unfortunately, when Covid-19 hit, I became furloughed and started thinking about what I really wanted to do in my future.”

My friend who was a Youth Support Worker always used to speak really positively about working with children and you could tell just how much she loved her job. When I spoke to her about what I could do as a new career, she mentioned that there was an opening in a local children’s care home that I could apply for. I thought, ‘If I’m going to make a change, why not dot it while everything is already changing around me so much anyways?’ so I applied and became a Youth Support Worker at The Haven.

Since then, I haven’t looked back – it’s been such an amazing change in my life. Being a Youth Support Worker doesn’t feel like work – you’re just having fun! It can sometimes be challenging working with young people and their complex needs, but I really enjoy the fact that I feel like I’m making a positive difference in these young people’s lives. From remembering the little things – like everyone taking part in a Wii tournament in the lounge on a Sunday morning – to the bigger things –  like all the emotional support we’ve given them – we want the young people we support to look back on their time at The Haven as a positive experience. It’s great to be a part of those memories and know that you’ve made them happy and helped them became the confident, independent young adult that they’ve grown into.

Although it was because of difficult circumstances, I’m glad that I was given the opportunity to have a career change into Care, especially with Salutem, as everyone across the business has been so supportive and made the transition from hairdressing into Care so seamless and easy. I feel like I’m constantly progressing in my role and learning new things every day. When I was a hairdresser, I felt like there was nothing new to learn and no new avenues to go down, but now working in Care, I feel like I’m constantly moving forwards and gaining knowledge and experience all the time.

In the future, I’m hoping to move into a more senior position, where I can continue to support young people while also supporting new staff. I want to give staff who might be new to Care the incredible welcome and support that I had, and make sure they love their job and are as happy as I am right now.”

If you’re interested in starting a career in Care, please get in touch with our Recruitment team at