The role of a care worker is looking after and supporting elderly people, children and vulnerable adults throughout their daily lives. You will be responsible for providing the best possible care aswell as assisting with general day to day tasks. As a care worker, you need to be approachable, friendly and have good communication skills, as those you are caring for will put their trust in you.
What qualifications do I need?
It all depends on the level at which you go in to care work. If you are starting at the bottom, you don’t necessarily need to have any form of qualifications, but it would be preferred if you have Level 2 and 3 NVQ’s in Health and Social Care. If you don’t have these qualifications there is no need to panic, as some care businesses will give you the option to complete these once you have started with them.
Do I need any previous experience?
Having experience in care will support your application. Have you ever cared for a relative, neighbour or carried out voluntary work in the local community? This could aid your application process as it shows that you have some knowledge of what is expected within the role.
Is training provided?
Training is provided during a 12-week induction scheme. During this period, you will be taught food hygiene, health and safety and basic first aid. At the end of the 12-week induction you will need to have achieved the national minimum standards of care within the UK.
What does the role entail?
As a carer you need to be passionate, with a positive can do attitude towards any scenario, as the role can be challenging at times. No two days will be the same as you will be working with a mixture of young and old and vulnerable adults. It is not a Monday – Friday, 9-5 role. You will need to be flexible about your working hours and be available to work weekends. Care work is 24/7 365 days a year.
Generally a working day would involve a care worker travelling to client’s homes to carry out a variety of duties. They could include the following –
Carrying out personal care tasks such as feeding, dressing and washing your patient.
Washing clothes, hoovering or making the bed to ensure the patients home is left clean and tidy.
Helping with the payment of bills and any other paperwork that the patient may need assistance with.
Speaking with relatives of your patient to give them an update on their condition and anything that needs reporting.
Organising days out/trips with your patient.
What are the chances of career progression?
There are a multitude of career paths that you can follow once you have become an experienced care worker. These range from senior care workers and shift supervisors to care managers.
Is a career in care right for you?
If you have the passion and drive to help make a difference to people’s lives then this role is perfect for you. Of course, it has its downsides, what role doesn’t? Some days can be quite challenging and you will tested in some tricky situations, which will include taking your patient to the toilet, changing their clothes and making sure they are washed and clean. It is also worth noting that when you first become a care worker, your patients may resist your help with their day to day life, so you will have to be resilient. In time your patients will come round and let down their barriers, becoming more open and honest towards you.
Being a care worker isn’t for the faint hearted, but you can forge a long career if you are committed to the role with a good chance of career progression. If a career in care sounds like your cup of tea, please visit our website to find the latest care worker roles available.