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Careers in Care

Your pathway into care...

If you are new to care or returning to care, whatever your age or experience the care sector would like to hear from you.  Employers want to know that you have the right qualities to work in care, so if you have compassion and empathy, and are passionate about making a difference to people’s lives you might find a career in care is perfect for you.

If you are starting a career in care with very little or no qualifications then you may want to undertake an introductory course, there are various options available from 5 day courses to 12 weeks with literacy and numeracy included, see table below.  Another way to start is to get a work experience placement and / or volunteering opportunity.  Your local job centre may also offer a sector based work academy (SBWA), this is generally linked to an employer offering a guaranteed interview.  You may also want to ask your advisor about disability confident to see employers that have signed up to ‘Disability Confident’ initiative.

As you work there will be opportunities to develop your skills and career through training and courses. You can also develop your skills with on-the-job learning through an Apprenticeship. Here we've highlighted some of the options for you, but first do undertake the Question of Care questionnaire to see if care is right for you?

Work experience is a great way of getting experience of working in care and also shows an employer your potential.

There is not much of a difference between work experience and volunteering. Work experience gives you direct experience in an area of work you want to work in. It generally tends to be short term from between 2-6 weeks. Volunteering can be for longer periods of time and your motivation can be to just occupy your time.

However, both work experience and volunteering can give you a whole host of benefits. The main ones are being able to build up experience to put on your CV and up-to-date references. Most employers want to know what you’ve been doing in the last three to six months, regardless of your experience prior to that.

There are various options to get in to volunteering or work experience. You can speak to Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector for a volunteering placement or your advisor at the Job Centre or Wolves at Work Coach for a work experience opportunity.

The Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector council can help you find a Volunteering position. You can find work experience either with Wolves at Work or through the Job Centre.

A Sector Based Work Academy (SBWA) is generally employer-led designed to meet the employer’s recruitment need, delivered via the Job Centre.

Sector Based Work Academy is pre-employment training which will include work experience and a guaranteed interview with a selected employer. You may be able to access support towards travel too, speak to your advisor to find out more.

An apprenticeship is on-the-job training where you can gain experience with an employer, get paid, and gain a qualification.

Each year there can be up to 800 apprenticeships available in care in Wolverhampton. You can be any age to have an apprenticeship.

To access an apprenticeship, speak to your tutor at college, trainer, careers advisor or your Wolves at Work coach and or visit the apprenticeship website.

There are many entry level positions available that you can take up with little or no qualifications. However, there are also many opportunities available for candidates who have higher level qualifications, too. Speak to your advisor at the Job Centre or Wolves at Work coach to find out about local opportunities.

Study for a qualification – If you are new to care or if you want to know if care is for you, you may want to start with an Introductory course - you can choose from a 5 day course or 12 week course (half a day a week) which include literacy and numeracy options.

You can undertake a Level 1 in Health & Social Care without being employed. However, you will need to find employment once you start to progress to level 2 or 3.

There are various local providers providing different levels of study from full time to part time, introductory to higher level qualifications. Speak to your careers advisor at your local college or training provider to find out more or see the local training provision matrix.

 

FAQs

Introduction or Preparation to Care - There are various providers offering Introductory courses. Providers are offering both a 5 day course and a 12 weeks course (½ day a week) which include literacy and numeracy. This will give you the basic knowledge to work in care, provide an understanding of your role and responsibilities and give you the tools you require to go to an interview and speak with confidence. You will also have the opportunity to review whether Care is for you.

Level 1, 2 and 3 - This will give you a recognised qualification, you can take it to any employer and it will provide confidence to an employer you can work at a certain level and standard. To undertake a level 2 you will be required to undertake some work in a care setting whether that is an employed capacity or volunteering capacity. To study a level 3 you will be required to be working in a care setting. It is for care workers or those wishing to progress to senior care worker roles.

There are various local providers providing different levels of study from full time to part time, introductory to higher level qualifications. Speak to your careers advisor at your local college or training provider to find out more or see the local training provision matrix.

Adult Education Wolverhampton Jobchange City of Wolverhampton College Wolves at Work Wolverhampton University Job Centre City of Wolverhampton Council
Responding to employer recruitment x x x x x
Preparation to work in Care x x
Level 1 in Care x
Level 1 Practical Care skills x
Level 2 Apprenticeship in Care – Employed in Care x
Level 3 Apprenticeship in Care – Employed in care x
Level 5 Apprenticeship in Health and Social Care Management – Employed in Care x
Specialist courses x x

Typically, a Preparation to Care course will include:

  • Health & Safety in Social Care
  • Food Safety
  • Person Centred Care
  • Safeguarding
  • Infection Control
  • Equality & Diversity
  • Starting with an Introduction to Care will give you the starting point to Care. It will give you the basic knowledge you will require to enter into care.
  • By studying Care you will gain an understanding of your role and responsibilities as well as gain an understanding of some of the topic such as safeguarding, being professional, health and safety, handling medicine safely, communication and interview skills, etc.
  • Some of the longer courses will even cover ICT, English and Math’s which are important if you like to progress your career.
  • Did you know, you can study Math’s and English at any time even when you are working at no cost to you or your employer.
  • Some of the courses are fully funded, have a discussion with your chosen training provider.
  • It will make you more employable.
  • You will be more confident when attending interviews.

The care certificate is based on 15 standards which you will need to complete in full before you can be awarded the certificate and will take you around 3 months to complete. These standards are:

  1. Understanding your role
  2. Awareness of mental health, dementia and learning disabilities
  3. Your personal development
  4. Safeguarding adults
  5. Safeguarding children
  6. Duty of care
  7. Equality & diversity
  8. Basic life support
  9. Health & safety
  10. Safe handling
  11. Infection prevention and control
  12. Fluids & nutrition
  13. Privacy & dignity
  14. Communication
  15. Work in a person-centred way

A Sector Based Work Academy is generally employer-led designed to meet the employer’s recruitment need, delivered via the Job Centre. Sector Based Work Academy is pre-employment training which will include work experience with a guaranteed interview with the relevant employer. You will continue to receive benefits whilst undertaking the training and you may be able to access support towards travel, too. If you are thinking of attending a SBWA, speak to your Job Centre Work Coach first.

Some course can be funded but it will depend on your current situation, are you working, receiving benefits, etc. It is important to gain some advice, speak to to your careers advisor at your local college or training provider who can advise you appropriately.

In most Care roles, you have to keep a log of the care you have provided. Writing Care logs or plans in coherent way is important. You may be also required to administer medicine to some of people you are providing care to, again it will make your employers and those receiving care from you more confident that you can do this in a safe way.

Disability Confident is a government led initiative that is designed to help employers recruit and retain disabled people and people with health conditions for their skills and talent, to access this provision you can speak to your Advisor at the Job Centre. Locally, an organisation called Enable, commissioned by the City Council, also support people with disabilities to find and keep a job, email Enable on EnableWolverhampton@shropshire.gov.uk

Additionally, The Work and Health programme is aimed at those with health conditions or disabilities to support them find and keep a job, local providers are:

- Shaw Trust - www.shaw-trust.org.uk
- Remploy - www.remploy.co.uk

There is not much difference between work experience and volunteering, Work experience gives you direct experience in an area of work you want to work in. it tends to be short term from between 2-6 weeks. Volunteering can be for a longer periods of time.

However, both work experience and volunteering can give you whole host of benefits. The main ones are being able to build up experience to put on your CV and up-to-date references. Most employers want to know what you’ve been doing in the last three to six months, regardless of your experience prior to that.

  • Up to date experience and reference you can put on your CV
  • Chance to gain new skills and experience which may be relevant to jobs you are applying for
  • Up to date reference which will be treated as a professional reference
  • A chance to attend training, even if it is in-house training which will help to develop your skills and knowledge
  • Get you into a routine and the habit of working
  • Give you experience of making applications and attending interviews
  • It also provides range of health benefits including your physical and mental health.