I was cycling to work this morning and I stopped at the lights on Clarendon Road near The Library Pub. It was sunny and the soundscape gave the impression that Leeds had just woken up and going to work. I turned back – a long queue of vehicles, patient and with engines on, waited for the lights to turn green. I got a thrill as I felt like a leader of an army of workers. When lights finally turned green, I eagerly cycled forward as if leading the flow of workforce.

I felt part of Earth’s workforce; part of all the millions of people who make the world go round because of the work they do.

Why did I feel that way? I arrived in the UK on 20 Sept 2011 to study at university. I looked for a job to fit between my university commitments. I couldn’t find a job during my first academic year. I longed to work and earn money because I wanted to gain a degree of financial security and stop relying on my ever supportive parents; I dedicated tens of hours to writing CVs and filling in application forms that were never successful. I was desperate for paid work, regardless of its type. At the beginning of 2013, I was at the peak of my frustration when I was fortunate enough to get a temporary position at Dencowear Ltd as Data Entry Assistant. It was certainly not the best job in the world but you can’t imagine how happy I was to be finally given the chance to contribute to society in some way!