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Considering a more rewarding career? Here’s why a live in carer position could be perfect for you!

A career in care is one of the most rewarding jobs you can do. The feeling you get helping others every day is like no other and there are no two days the same when you work in care.

You may not have considered a career as a live-in carer as it is not the most obvious type of care but it can have a range of benefits when compared to nursing home carers. Both careers are rewarding but being a live-in carer has slightly more advantages for both you and the person you would be caring for.

The personal touch

As a live-in carer you are in the position to create a unique relationship with the person you are providing care for. Living with someone gives you the opportunity to really get to know them and as a live-in carer you will have the chance to truly become a part of someone’s life. You will learn all there is to know about them so that you can have a meaningful connection and you are in the best position to provide carer for that person should they begin to deteriorate. You will also get to know the family of the person you are caring for in order to get a fully rounded view of your client.

Making a difference

Often, having a full time live-in carer can mean that an older person can stay at home with their family instead of going into residential care. This can mean the world to an older person and their family who all want to stay together. As a live-in carer you can be this difference and allow a family to stay together for as long as possible. There is no other feeling like this and knowing you are having such a huge positive impact is incredibly rewarding.

As a live in carer you may also find that the person you have the biggest impact on is the spouse of family member who has been shouldering the responsibility of sole carer for the client. Caring for a loved one is a 24/7 job and comes with a range of responsibilities all of which you can relieve as a live-in carer when you take over this burden- allowing the family member to go back to enjoying spending time with their loved on.

caring as a career

Giving something back

As a society we owe a lot to our older generations who have paved the way for our way of life. Often older people feel they are forgotten or left behind but a if you look for home care jobs, it helps you to give back to our older generation and show they are still very much appreciated. Older people have much to teach us and as a live-in carer you will be in the ideal situation to learn from your client at the same time as giving something back to someone who has worked hard all their life and now needs a bit of help to enjoy their old age.

There is no more rewarding job than one in which you care for others and as a carer delivering in home care you will be able to dedicate most of your time caring for someone who now needs a bit more support to also enjoy life.

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A job as a carer usually evolves with experience, but do you need qualifications to begin with? Find out here.

A job as a carer usually involves helping a vulnerable individual with personal care tasks, like washing, dressing and using the toilet. Live in care for an older person  may also involve food preparation, feeding and giving medication as well as housework, laundry and shopping if caring for someone in their own home. As a home care operative, you might be asked to be help your client to socialise and access outside activities, enabling them to find ways to continue doing the things that they enjoy.

Will I need a formal qualification?

Although some employers will request a qualification, a good carer is generally considered to be somebody who has the right qualities as a person, rather than the right qualifications. A good carer is somebody who can relate to people from a wide variety of different backgrounds, can communicate well, show respect and sensitivity towards clients and remains calm under pressure.

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If an employer does request qualifications, this will usually be an NVQ 2 in care or a diploma in health and social care. However, if your potential employer is convinced that you are the right person for the job they will often be more concerned about whether you are willing to work towards a qualification on the job rather than already having one. The standard areas of a care qualification include values, safe care, supported living, communication and handling information. The NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) scheme has now changed to the QCF (Quality and Credit Framework) scheme and this too will be replaced in early 2018 by the RQF (Regulated Qualifications Framework). Although this all sounds a little complicated, the principles of learning and majority of content will remain the same. The schemes enable you to earn credits. Each credit requires around 10 hours of learning. These credits build up to make units and units build towards qualifications. On average, a level 2 qualification will take around a year to complete. This qualification then stays with you and will be recognised in other places of work.

The Care Certificate

All employees new to care work are required to complete new, standardised training called the Care Certificate. This is made up of 15 components that are key to developing skills as a carer. Once the Care Certificate has been achieved, it will be recognised by other employers so is a great thing to have on your CV. Although the Care Certificate is not accredited, elements of it will count towards a QCF if they are witnessed by a qualified assessor.

Experience

Just as important as a qualification is experience. Employers will place a lot of emphasis on evidence of experience. This doesn't have to be purely care based. Evidencing customer service skills, where you needed to be friendly, professional and helpful will be valued by employers. The principle of looking after customers is along the same lines as looking after clients that you would be caring for. Experience of caring for someone at home, perhaps a family member or friend is also very meaningful as it shows you have an understanding of what is required when looking after a vulnerable person.

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Working as a live-in carer is a very rewarding role with high levels of job satisfaction. It may not be the first job that springs to mind when you embark on your career in the caring profession but it has many advantages both personally and professionally over the more typical care roles on residential care homes and nursing homes.

For a start the people that are being cared for overwhelmingly want to stay in their own homes if they can when they become old and frail so you are already helping someone achieve this aim. According to the Better At Home report from the Live-in Care Hub, 99% of people say that live-in care helps them continue to live a happy and fulfilling life even with illness and frailty.

However, the role of a carer of any kind requires certain personal traits, skills and attitudes that not everyone possesses. Of course, you have to be compassionate and empathetic but you also need a good dose of common-sense and practical skills such as cooking tasty, home-cooked meals. You also have to effectively take on the role of companion as well as carer, which might mean taking you elderly client on trips to the shops, library, doctors or community clubs – it is a job that requires true dedication but which, in return, is truly rewarding. A live-in carer can make such a significant difference to how an old person can live their life in their golden years.

What Skills and Personal Qualities Are Required  To Be A Live-in Carer?

Experience of some sort in the health sector is always valuable but not a necessity as most live-in care agencies and providers do offer training when necessary. Live-in carers come from all walks of life – they may be nurses, care workers previously based in a residential or nursing home; equally they may have cared for their own elderly relatives before and decide it is a role they would like to take further.

Some are young students from abroad who find they can combine caring for someone else with their studies – often enabling them to live in pleasant areas in cities and towns they would have struggled to afford if they had to pay rent. This can be a perfect way to gain valuable experience in the caring profession whilst also studying for relevant qualifications so they can avoid the problem suffered by so many newly qualified young adults who have qualifications but no experience so find it hard to secure a good job.

caring for the elderly

Whatever walk of life a live-in or in-home carer comes from they the most important quaoties they can possess are:

  • Compassion
  • Dedication
  • A positive outlook
  • Willingness to work hard
  • Common-sense

They also need to be physically fit and be able to work happily on their own.

What About Ongoing Support?

Of course, training in such an important role is essential but so too is ongoing support while working in the job, and also continuing professional development to help you develop in your career. Live-in care agencies and providers have a duty of care to their client which means they will always help the carer deal with any difficult situations and where there are complex care needs they will provide support, for instance in the form of an additional carer with specialist skills for medical conditions such as dementia or Parkinsons disease.

All in all a job as a live-in carer is extremely rewarding, you will receive training and gain recognised qualifications, as well as ongoing support to develop your career as a carer to its fullest extent.

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Live in care may not be a job you’ve ever considered, but it could be a career that brings you much pleasure. Here, we look at why people choose to start a career in live in care.

There are plenty of paths you can take when looking for a job in the care sector, but one that seems to be growing in popularity and demand is that of being a live-in carer. But would it be the right job for you?

Creating a rapport with your client

Delivering exceptional care to an elderly person is the primary objective of live in care jobs, but one of the surprising additional benefits is building a close friendship with your client. If you were a carer in a residential care home, you would be dealing with lots of different residents, and it is unlikely you would ever be able to get to know them as well as if you were a live in care provider. As a live-in carer, you will have lots of time to get to know your client – their likes and dislikes, their personality, their family members and their characteristics. Knowing all about them will lead to a better relationship, and help you begin to anticipate their needs.

Job satisfaction and security

Being a carer for anyone – be it professionally or for a loved one – is a specialised vocation that takes a unique and dedicated person to do it. The rewards for becoming a live-in carer are not just financial. Whilst live-in carers can benefit from having a private room, internet access, a generous wage and making savings on rent/mortgage payments, utility bills and transport costs, the knowledge that you are making an enormous difference to the life of an elderly client is hugely rewarding too.

become a carer

No two days are ever the same

If there is one thing you can predict about being a live-in carer, it is the unpredictability of your day! Unlike working at a residential care home, you do not have to stick to a schedule for things like mealtimes and recreation. You will be able to help your elderly client with everything from getting dressed in the morning to getting them to their bingo night or social group. Doing even the smallest tasks – reminding them to take their medication, or switching on their favourite television programme – will mean supporting them in every way that matters.

Support and advice for you

Knowing that you are closely on hand day and night to help and assist your elderly client will be of great comfort to them, but what about you? Being a live-in carer does not mean you are alone in going about your daily employment. If you work with a care company, you will have support and assistance of your own. You will have managers that can guide you and provide on the job training for all kinds of aspects of your job. If you need to take a break, your employers can arrange for a relief carer to take over, so there is no disruption to your client’s daily care.

The life of a live-in carer is one that is dedicated and specialised, but incredibly fulfilling. More and more care workers are choosing to be live-in carers and really make a difference to elderly people’s lives.