Why work in Care?
Caring involves supporting people to live as independent a life as possible. Care work, as a career choice opens a wide range of roles from caring for elderly people in a care home to caring for disabled people in their own homes. Caring means enabling people with disabilities to access the community, for example, a support worker may travel on public transport with a person with learning difficulties to a local college. A career in care for the right candidate, whilst sometimes challenging, can be highly satisfying and rewarding.
What does a carer do?
A carer is in some respects an intermediary who must work with the client they are caring for and the client’s family. It is essential that the client’s precise needs are agreed and a specific plan needs to be formulated and acted on. This may entail ensuring the client is comfortable and that all the normal daily routines are catered for including shopping and meals etc. In many cases providing emotional support is also crucial.
How do I get into care work?
In order to apply for work as a professional carer to start your career there are many positions advertised on websites. Depending on your individual circumstances there are a wide variety of positions available, based in the community, at Care Homes and also in Hospitals and long stay residential establishments. Apprenticeships are becoming a popular way into the profession. Whilst some previous experience in a caring role can be beneficial, it is not always an essential requirement. Employers give full training to the right candidates. A Disclosure and Barring Check is necessary as carers work with the elderly and people with disabilities who are vulnerable, so a DBS would be required by an employer and also sometimes a CRB check.
What does a carer earn?
The salary for a worker starting out is in the range of £12,500 – £16,000 pa. An experienced carer would likely be on around £18,000 pa whilst a very experienced or Senior Care Supervisor may earn £25,000 pa or more. Salaries may vary regionally.
What skills do I need to work in care?
It is essential that you are able to deal with people of all ages and from all walks of life. Excellent communication skills and a good understanding of tactfulness are crucial. Organizational skills will be of great benefit. Patience, understanding and calmness in a sometimes stressful environment is also important.
How can I progress in care?
There is every opportunity to keep learning with the opportunity to attend a number of internal or external training initiatives and progress into senior roles as well as administrative positions and management / senior management in a wide variety of Care institutions.
Am I suited to care work?
Like with so many career choices you will probably have an idea if care is a potential career path for you and you could discuss the matter further with friends and family and indeed anyone you know who is already working in care to sound out their thoughts on the matter.