Maximum effort sets Maxine off on journey

Maxine Roake of 'Journey 2self' a new business set up to give classes on first-aid.
Maxine Roake of 'Journey 2self' a new business set up to give classes on first-aid.

A NEW business specialising in teaching first aid and other key skills for the workplace has opened on the Ramparts Business Park north of Berwick.

Journey2self has just received accreditation from ITC First Aid – one of the leading national providers of first aid courses in the country – to become an ITC first aid approved centre.

They celebrated with their first intake of students on the emergency first aid at work course.

“This has taken a huge amount of work as we have to meet the exacting standards of the awarding body,” explained director Maxine Roake.

“But this means that we know we are delivering quality courses which will meet the needs of our clients.”

Maxine has lived in Berwick for 11 years, and her family has a strong local connection. She has a wealth of experience in education and the teaching of key skills behind her.

When she is not taking outdoor health and safety courses, Maxine helps the North Northumberland Explorer Scouts with the outdoor components of their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

“Whatever you are doing, you need first aid-qualified staff specialising in that field. That is true whether it is working with children, the elderly or outdoors.

“That is why for a lot of businesses now it is mandatory to have at least one person qualified in first-aid. That goes for schools and hotels, too.”

“We offer the kind of courses that a town like Berwick needs.”

Despite that, setting up the business has been less than straightforward, given the much-publicised economic difficulties facing small business.

“It has been awfully tough setting up our new site in The Ramparts,” said Maxine.

“It took an awful lot of time, effort and money to make this happen.

“We were also helped by a start-up loan from the North Northumberland for Businesses Microloan Fund.”

But having managed to open up and to get ITC accreditation, Maxine is already looking forwrd to being able to offer more.

“We have three members of staff at the moment, but we are hoping to expand. We’ll be looking to bring in more experts offering more courses.”

The company has worked hard to achieve this standard and it recognises the fact that the trainers have both the knowledge and teaching skills to deliver a range of courses.

Director Maxine said that one strength of the courses offered by Journey2self is that they are environment-specific.

“We know that not everyone in the Borders and north Northumberland works in an office based setting.”

Ms Roake added: “What we recognise is that everyone is on a learning journey of self -development.

“It may be that you need particular qualifications for work or that you just want to challenge yourself in a new direction.

“Over time we aim to add to and develop our range of courses to enable more people in this area to start their own learning journeys.”