Life Of A Professional Caregiver

Making a difference every day – life as a professional caregiver

Over the last eighteen months, the vital work professional caregivers undertake in social care, keeping older and vulnerable people safe in their own homes providing care and support, has been very much front and centre of media attention.

We know that when asked, the majority of older people would rather stay in the familiar surroundings of their own homes for as long as possible. In fact, with the recent issues arising in care home settings due to Covid, the number of people wanting to be supported in their own home has skyrocketed to unprecedented levels. This support typically involves companionship, help around the home and personal care. Sometimes this can also involve specialist support such as dementia care.  

For many families though, especially if receiving support at home for the first time, it can be a daunting and nervous time. To be successful, the relationship between caregiver and client is key in helping clients feel happy and comfortable and be willing to accept help. At Home Instead, this is what we do day in, day out – working with families providing the care and reassurance needed to ensure clients remain safe and happy at home. 

But despite the valuable work that front line carers do, Social Care work in the media is often portrayed as hard, underpaid and thankless work. But at Home Instead, we know the role can be very rewarding for the right person if they are well trained, supported and rewarded. There are, in fact, not many jobs where you are genuinely making a difference to people’s lives every day, and the heart warming thank you cards and letters we receive from families all the time demonstrates the impact caregivers make. 

So, in our view, for a caregiver to be able to give so much every day and have the positive impact on the lives of our clients, we need to pay attention to their needs

  • Professional Needs: to be viewed as a professional, and to have the tools, training and support to do the job

  • Monetary Needs: to be well rewarded and recognised for the work they do.

  • Personal needs – to have a positive work life balance

  • Values: to be recruited for values that align with the role. To have caring and compassionate nature

  • Self Esteem Needs: To be recognised and appreciated

  • Social Needs: To have a sense of belonging, feel part of the team and have reassurance of shared experiences. 

Here, Sarah one of our caregivers, talks about her experience as a professional, part time caregiver – 

“I love working for Home Instead because I feel like I am giving something back, and even though there are some challenging times, there’s rewarding ones too. One client I look after has always loved dogs, and during the lockdown her Labradoodle was desperately in need of a haircut. When I could finally take the dog to the groomers coming back and seeing my clients face was a wonderful moment, the client was so grateful and couldn’t thank me enough. Little things like this makes the job so worthwhile. Knowing that you are enabling a person to live in their own homes where they want to be is fantastic. Being a caregiver is one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.”

There is no question about the value all front line social care workers provide. But it takes the right training, support, rewards and appreciation to realise the huge rewards that can be gained from making a genuine difference to people’s lives every day.

If you would like more information about becoming a Home Instead CAREGiver, contact us on 01204 565065 or [email protected]