Rewarding, tough, challenging and life-changing: by choosing a job in social care you’ve signed up to a career with exciting times ahead.
It’s not for the faint-hearted though – one day it will make your heart soar, another it could bring you to tears – and you have to be prepared to deal with the obstacles that will be thrown your way.
As well as having the right formal education, developing strong skills can help you cope emotionally and to excel in a career in social care. Attributes you will have or want to develop include:
- Strong communication
- Able to support health and safety
- Continuous development of your knowledge and practice
- Supporting and safeguarding vulnerable people
Social care covers a diverse range of careers but the one thing they have in common is providing social and emotional support to help people live their lives.
You could train as social worker or care home manager, work in a residential home or help people in their own homes. You might prefer to work in education, housing or counselling.
Why is social care a great career choice?
Social work is never dull - Don’t fancy sitting behind a desk each day? Then social care could be a great choice for you. Care involves being on your feet visiting people at home, in schools, in hospitals and in care centres. A good social care worker engages with individuals that need help most and you won’t achieve that from the comfort of an office
Diversity – There are so many areas you can work in. People normally specialise in one area once qualified but that doesn’t mean you can’t switch to a different area as your career progresses.
Make a difference - It’s one of the few jobs where you can actively challenge social injustice. If you have a strong sense of right and wrong, working in social care allows you to really make a difference. It’s not just a career, it’s a vocation and you’ll be able to say: “I made someone’s life better.”
Social care checklist to kick start your career
- Join professional networks and organisations
- Get to know professional development standards and put together your own plan to keep your skills up-to-date
- Familiarise yourself with the Code of Ethics for Social Work
- Internships or voluntary positions can really help when you look for your first role
- Get help from people working in social care when writing your CV
- Enrol on the Assessed and Supported Year in Employment to build your skills, knowledge and confidence
- Shadow people and ask lots of questions!
You’ve got a great career ahead of you in social care – you have the power to transform people’s lives and make society a nicer place. Apply now and do something that really matters.