Military Spouse Employment Initiative: Real Stories; Real Spouses
November 10, 2020 - Defence Stories
Leanne Denison and family.
Our very first relocation was the one and only time I was able to keep my job. I thought I had won the lottery! However, when the next relocation happened, there was no open positions at the new place. I spent the next 10 years working stints in each of the cities we moved, always struggling through a period of unemployment and uncertainty. At times it was very difficult for us financially and on my own mental health. I was a fairly ambitious young woman when we started out and I found that it became impossible for us to both pursue our careers, while raising our children, and moving around the country. I took a step back for several years while the children were pre-school age. Luckily I was able to volunteer for various organizations in our community and avoid a major gap in my resume. This gap and break in employment or volunteering is a very common issue for many military spouses. I know many also feel that our resumes are a dead giveaway and we are unfairly overlooked because of it. This initiative is so important for providing real, tangible support to military families and the military community.
The application process is actually quite straightforward and simple, especially in comparison to some jobs applications I’ve applied for. All I had to do was indicate the areas I was interested in and qualified for, provided my resume and a few supporting documents. I had to do a written assessment and a phone interview and then I was fortunate enough to be offered an indeterminate position at DND! I was initially hired by the National Student Hiring Team, but have since transitioned to ADM(IE).
This opportunity has provided me and my family with a sense of stability that allows us to plan for the future. Job hunting is as much a part of our military life as moving and deployments are. I have taken employment-related seminars, workshops and trainings in three different provinces over the years, always trying to gain an edge or have my resume stand out. This initiative helps spouses and partners to get their foot in the door and hopefully find long term employment, stability, decreased stress on relocation. It also helped me feel connected to the organization that is such a huge part of our lives.
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