Welcome to the latest edition of Senior Snippets: the advisory column with the older members of our community in mind, this time focusing on our lovely CAREGivers, brought to you by Bryn Evans of Home Instead in Sheffield.
Sometimes misconceptions can get in the way of people applying for a job in care. In this blog, we answer some of the most frequently asked questions by people who may be verging on a decision to make a career change. This blog is intended to show you exactly why #youcancare.
“I know I’d be great at the companionship side of care, and would love to chat to clients all day. But I don’t know if I would want to wash and bathe clients.”
This is a very common view, and points to a commonly held opinion of what social care entails. While washing and bathing, and other aspects of personal care can sometimes come into helping clients in their home, it is often one small feature of a broader spectrum of help. Our CAREGivers very frequently split their time helping with tasks around the home, and offering conversation and companionship, which includes every aspect of simply being a friend. We work on the basis of longer call visits giving you time to care. It means you will not be moving quickly from client to client allowing you more time to focus on the client. Instead we look for CAREGivers who enjoy spending time in people’s company, enjoying making memories or developing new skills around particular hobbies or interests.
“I’d love to be considered to be a CAREGiver as it sounds like something I’d be great at, but I’ve never worked in care, and have never received any training! So there’s really no point in even applying.”
This couldn’t be more wrong! At Home Instead, we value the person, and their compassion and empathy, more than any previous experience. If you have any previous experience, then great, but this is by no means how we select our CAREGivers. We look for people with empathy and a caring attitude. We can train you in all the rest.
We provide full training in order to prepare you for the job of being a Home Instead CAREGiver. We provide ongoing training, and ensure that not only will you be able to provide the highest level of care to clients, but you will also be supported and reassured by Home Instead. We are all in this together.
“I’ve spent too long stuck inside an office, so I’m looking for a job that will get me outdoors and on my feet. I don’t think that being a CAREGiver will achieve this because I’ll be stuck in the client’s home all day.”
Some clients might need to be in their homes more than others, but the idea of a CAREGiver is to enable the client to achieve those things that they might not be able to on their own. Sometimes clients might not want to leave the house due to anxiety or depression, and a friend is exactly what they need to assist them in getting out. Other clients might need some physical help to enable them to walk in a National Park, or even go to the local garden centre. CAREGivers are there to promote maintaining a good quality of life for those who might struggle on their own. It might take a little bit of time and plenty of cups of tea and conversation to build up the confidence and trust of the client. After that we encourage visits and outings as much as the clients wish for.
“What happens if I encounter some difficulty or struggle? I’m worried that I won’t be manage when I am left alone with a client!”
One thing that is certain is that when you’re a CAREGiver for Home Instead, you are never alone. Maintaining a consistent culture is a key part of what makes us so special. Because of this, we are united by one mission, and one voice. Nationally, we are all part of one big team, so that we can tackle our goal of changing the face of ageing. Everyone in our Home Instead family shares the same ethos and values and we are there to support you to keep on going when times seem tough.
We have a very supportive and responsive culture; if we didn’t support our CAREGivers, then how could we expect our CAREGivers to support our elderly clients? Home Instead provides training to give you the skills you need to provide attentive care and we offer additional training to enable you to develop further if you wish. It is equally important to remember that even with the training, this is a role that requires practice, but to help you do that with confidence, we buddy you with another CAREGiver as you make your first visits. We select CAREGivers who are empathetic, and genuinely care about others, so if you have this, then you will excel in this role. It simply takes a bit of time and support from the Home Instead family to ensure you can do the best you can.
If you have any other questions or concerns, you can find lots of information at https://www.homeinstead.co.uk/Index.do. We really care about the well-being of our CAREGivers. Without their hard work and caring approach, Home Instead wouldn’t be where it is today. Put your worries aside and take a leap of faith. Help us to achieve our goal to change the face of ageing here in the UK. And remember…#youcancare!