Social carers are now considered ‘key workers’ in the UK, and more people than ever are considering roles to support others, as a result of a newfound respect for those helping our society function. Could you work in social care?
To work in social care isn’t to choose a career that will reward you hugely financially, or in status, but so much more. It is personally rewarding, hugely beneficial to those you work with and one of the most compassionate and impactful roles you could hope to work in.
What is Social Care?
Social care is a pretty broad term, but in short, refers to all of the personal care, protective care and practical assistance required for adults or children who need extra support in their day-to-day lives. This ‘extra support’ may be required for a variety of reasons: illness, disability, circumstance, family dynamic or living situation. Care may be provided by the state or obtained as needed privately.
Those who work in this sector may have one of several different job titles, including, but by no means limited to: social worker, social care worker, social carer, support worker, carer, family liaison officer and personal care worker.
Social care workers may work in a specific healthcare setting (or, in some occasions, a more formal specialist care centre) or in the homes of individuals. The exact responsibilities of the role depend on both the employer and the individual’s care needs.
Who Roles are there in Social Care?
Social care workers have a range of qualification levels: some just basic on-the-job healthcare training, and some full nursing training, depending on the requirements of the individual role. Social carers come from a variety of backgrounds, both professionally and personally, and are often dynamic and physically able people who are willing to work hard and always go the extra mile.
What Traits are Required in this Sector?
Of course, there is no one character profile to suit social carers, but there are some traits that are especially beneficial for the role. These include:
- Patience – Social care workers often work long-term with service users and the journey to a better quality of life and/or not requiring care any more can be far from linear. Social carers need a great degree of patience and understanding to help nurture those they’re caring for to a better path and progress.
- Empathy – those requiring social care are often in difficult or stressful circumstances and it’s important for those providing care to be empathetic and understanding. Bonding with individuals is key to a healthy and happy relationship, and isn’t something everyone has the ability to do.
- Resilience – Social care work isn’t easy, and there are as many ups as there are downs. Situations and people can be difficult, and this takes a strong, resilient nature to handle. Carers working in social care should remain determined; never giving up at the first hurdle or when the going gets tough.
- Respect – the nature of social care work is that it is sometimes received begrudgingly, and may even be met by resistance. Being able to hold and maintain respect for others – for those receiving care, for those working with carers, and for other professionals – is key to maintaining professionalism throughout your social care career.
- Compassion – there are truly few professions that deal with as varied a clientele base as social care workers; and perhaps none! Therefore social care workers must remain kind and compassionate with all those they deal with, as well as politically agile, and able to speak to and effectively communicate and work with people of all levels, backgrounds, abilities and ages.
Finally society seems to be sitting up and acknowledging – and respecting – the huge contribution that social care workers make to those they serve and the communities that they work within. If you’re a compassionate ‘people person’ and want to really make a difference in the lives of others, and particularly, some of the most vulnerable people in society, now is the time to step up and make the first move to a new, rewarding, role.
Registering with OUTT provides experienced social care candidates the opportunity to build an employer review base and take full control of where and when they work. It’s your life, live it! Register with us now!