A Support Worker is someone who works with vulnerable people. This could include elderly people, homeless people, addicts, or those who are mentally or physically handicapped. This type of job would suit someone who is interested in people and enjoys caring for others.
Support Workers need to have excellent social skills as they work directly with vulnerable people with all sorts of personalities and temperaments, and will need to know instinctively how to talk to and handle each person in their care. Support Workers need to be patient, confident and calm as they may find themselves in challenging situations which they'll need to diffuse. You'll also need to be resilient, as the people you'll be dealing with may have been through traumatic experiences, which may be difficult for them - and you - to talk about.
The role of a Support Worker will vary from case to case. Some people just need a friendly listening ear, while others might need physical support, or step-by-step help to get them living an independent life.
The duties of a Support Worker vary according to the needs of the patient. Elderly people, for example, will need a very different set of skills to a recovering addict looking to take his or her first steps back into the world of work. Duties typically include:
-Physical care, including washing, dressing, physiotherapy activities, helping the patient to eat, drink or go to the bathroom
-Emotional support, including counselling, one on one sessions, group therapy or just providing company for and listening to a lonely or elderly patient
-Keeping accurate records of each patient's progress