Emily's story

I worked in London and then moved to Australia soon after I qualified, so most of my career was overseas. When my husband and I moved back to Manchester, England, I had 2 small children and no professional contacts in the area.

I decided to take a career-break and work with my husband who was setting up his own business. He's an artisan baker so we set up a high-quality commercial bakery. I actually loved it and got very involved in the branding, marketing and business end of things. I learnt a lot of new skills and we won awards - the business really took off.

After I'd been out of industry for about 5 years, I started to think, if I was ever going to return, I'd better do it soon. It was tough. I faced a lot of dead-ends and disappointments. I soon realised that recruitment consultants are the gatekeepers to most jobs and because I had got a slightly unusual CV, they weren't making room for me. I went to an ICAEW event about returning to work after a career-break and that's when I came across caba. When I heard about their career coaching I decided to go for it.

It's a great service - the career coaching. I was allocated a local coach who worked hard to help me. It was great to have someone to think things through with. He encouraged me to think about my contacts from my days in London and to methodically go through the ones I had on LinkedIn. I went down to London for a day and met as many people as I could and got up to speed with what was going on. It was a real confidence boost - it put me back in that world again.

Not long after that, I approached my local university about Associate Lecturer opportunities and I now teach part-time in the business school. I also do some consulting for a firm made up of my previous contacts. I would also like to pursue some independent freelance opportunities, and I am confident that will happen in time.

For me, the main thing I took from the coaching was the space to think strategically about my position and what I wanted to achieve. I felt my coach really cared about me achieving the right outcome and was keen to support me. I used it as a chance to re-build my professional confidence and work out exactly what I wanted to achieve.

*Some personal details of this client have been changed to protect their identity

how caba can help

caba supports the wellbeing of past and present ICAEW members, ACA students, ICAEW staff members, and their spouses, partners and children up to the age of 25. For advice, information and support please:

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Who is eligible for support?

We support past and present members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW), ACA students, ICAEW staff members, and the family and carers of members and students. 

  1. No matter where your career takes you, past and present members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England Wales (ICAEW) are eligible for caba’s services for life, even if you change your career and leave accountancy 
  2. ACA students (ICAEW Provisional Members) who are either an active student or have been an active student within the last three years are eligible for caba's services 
  3. Past and present staff members of the ICAEW or caba are eligible for caba's services for life, even if you leave either organisation. Please note, for former employees, our financial support is only available to those who have had five years continuous employment with either organisation 
  4. Family members and carers of either an eligible past or present ICAEW member, ACA student or past or present employee of the ICAEW or caba are eligible for caba's support. We define a family member as a: 
    1. spouse, civil partner or cohabiting partner 
    2. widow, widower or surviving civil partner who has not remarried or cohabiting with a partner 
    3. divorced spouse or civil partner who has not remarried or cohabiting with a partner 
    4. child aged up to 25. Please note, children aged between 16 and 25 are not eligible for individual financial support 
    5. any other person who is dependent on the eligible individual supporting them financially or are reliant on the eligible individual’s care 
    6. any other person on whom the eligible individual is reliant, either financially or for care 

You can find out more about our available support both in the UK and around the world on our support we offer  page. 

Are your services means-tested?

If you need financial support, we carry out a means test where we consider income, expenditure, capital and assets.  

*Please note none of our other services are means-tested. 

I’m an accountant, but not a member of ICAEW, can you still help?

Unfortunately not. We only support past and present ICAEW members, their carers and their families. If we are unable to support you, where possible we will point you to help elsewhere.

caba has supported me in the past; can I receive support from caba again?

We understand that circumstances change. If we’ve helped you in the past there’s no reason why we can’t help you again. You can contact us at any time. Please call us if you need our help.

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