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Working Lives UK: Charity worker

Family outreach worker Lucy Potter is trying to improve the lives of some of the poorest people in the country.

Lucy works for 4Children, a national charity dedicated to helping children in the UK. She's based in Holbeck, south Leeds, ranked as one of the most deprived neighbourhoods in the country. This is a high-crime, high-unemployment area but Ms Potter is determined to make a difference.

Often her days are spent going door-to-door, introducing herself to families and finding out ways in which she might be able to help. It can be a tough, thankless job and she has had the door slammed in her face more times than she cares to mention.

Lucy earns £17,600 per year (US$27,000), a salary which she says leaves her living "hand to mouth" at times. She has children of her own, but the amount of childcare she receives has been cut as part of the government's welfare reforms. The result is that she can no longer afford childcare and will soon be leaving her job, she says.