As I was strolling through pretty Richmond the other day with a lovely group of American expat wives, one of them brought up a website named Women Like Us (www.womenlikeus.org.uk). The organization seeks to find part-time placement for women who are reentering the workforce after a hiatus for other important life responsibilities such as raising a family. This could be a valuable resource for accompanying spouses or expat women who initially move over on a Tier 1 or other appicable visa and seek temporary employment during the search for something full-time.
For accompanying spouses in particular (especially in the instance where one primary income suffices for the most part), the end goal may not be to find full-time work, but, rather, simply have a flexible work schedule that appeals to the career they may have had to leave behind in their home country—and one that is also conducive to scheduling around child-rearing, volunteering, or exploring other interests and travels. Beyond monetary compensation, there is no value that could be placed on the boost a professional woman gets from fulfilling the roles she once did after time away, as well as being able to once again contribute financially. I know for me, who is not even yet a mother, my initial months of unemployment in London left me feeling a bit unstructured and purposeless, with skills going to waste. True, I tried to channel my inner Domestic Goddess (for the first time in my life!) and found meaningful outlets through personal projects and touring London, yet there was still a nagging desire for more. Knowing of Women Like Us would have been useful at that time, no question, so I happily pass it on to any other expat women seeking part-time employment in London—the organization also offers coaching on how to successfully reenter the workforce.