Providing support and care to elderly people is a big part of working in aged care. You may consider working in aged care if you have a strong desire to serve others and enjoy spending time with senior citizens.
In the Australian aged care industry, there are many positions available for people with the skills essential to the provision of services.
People working in aged care offer senior clients various forms of assistance. It can mean helping to transport someone who is no longer able to drive or assisting an elderly person with their personal hygiene tasks.
Some aged care workers are there to provide elderly clients companionship aside from helping with various chores. This is especially true for aged clients with mobility issues, which can make it difficult for them to participate in social activities or even perform basic tasks like going to the supermarket or taking a stroll around their neighbourhood.
This article discusses how to become an aged care worker in Australia and provides information on what you must do to succeed in this career path.
Aged care work comes with its own set of challenges. Being empathetic and sensitive to the needs of elderly clients are of great importance. It’s also crucial to have the right educational background and experience.
There are different education and training options available to learn and grow into an aged care career. One of these is the CHC33015 Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing), which can be studied online.
Another is the CHC33021 Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing and Disability) qualification, which is also offered via online learning.
These Certificate III courses offer lessons that help equip you with tasks and requirements that you will commonly encounter in an aged care setting. Lessons cover the following;
Providing individualised, effective and holistic aged care
Supporting and working with other healthcare workers
Developing and building required skill sets (e.g., interpersonal, communication, etc.)
Working with different types of clients
After finishing this program, you will have gained a nationally accredited Certificate III and the right foundation to start working in aged care or aged care and disability.
Basic aged care work is considered an entry-level career, so as long as you meet the criteria of the establishment you’re applying to, it’s possible to get employed with little to no experience. However, gaining relevant work experience is crucial in this career. Some things you can do include volunteering or working as an intern in an aged care facility or a similar establishment.
Another important aspect of getting an aged care job is self-promotion. Make sure your Linkedin profile is updated, follow industry influencers and institutions, and keep yourself up to date on news, issues, and trends in aged care.
Following accounts of aged care establishments and healthcare providers specialising in looking after the elderly, is also helpful in getting information on the latest job openings in this sector.
People working in aged care earn a median wage of $1,382 per week, which works out to be a median of $36 per hour. This is according to the Labour Market Insights website of the Australian Government. However, more than the salary, aged carers experience a different kind of satisfaction in knowing they’re able to help someone or make a client happy at the end of each workday.
A combination of hard (technical) and soft skills is important to succeed in the aged care industry. Below is a list of attributes you’ll find useful when working with elderly clients;
First aid skills
General health knowledge
Home maintenance skills
Legal and ethical knowledge
Safe lifting and OH&S
Getting your CHC33015 Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) at Swinburne Open Education not only ensures you have a strong foundation to build upon. It also provides you with the opportunity to study online with the assurance you’ll receive qualified training and support from experts who will help you get job-ready in aged care.
With a Swinburne Open Education certification, you’ll be learning from a nationally accredited education provider in Australia. You can study from home or just about anywhere and finish the course knowing you’re ready to start work as an aged carer.
A career in aged care can be very meaningful and rewarding. The reason is that you’ll be working with people who have some level of dependence on you. You’ll be providing the support they need to perform everyday activities, participate in social events and live a life of dignity.
This work, however, presents certain challenges, both mentally and physically. Physical challenges can come with caring for an elderly or disabled individual who requires hands-on assistance.
As a support worker, you may be expected to help a client who exhibits difficult behaviour or suffers from various health issues. You may also experience sadness and loss or need to interact with the friends and family of your client.
It’s not enough to have the training and qualifications to become an effective aged carer. You also need to be compassionate, empathetic, respectful, responsible and patient.
Aside from completing the CHC33015 Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) program at Swinburne Open Education, you may also take up relevant training or courses such as first aid and nursing. You can go on a traineeship (on-the-job training) in aged care or volunteer in a facility for the elderly as well.
Australia has been facing a shortage of aged care workers for several years now as more members of the population continue to age. So, as long as you meet the requirements set by your prospective employer, it should be easy for you to get employed in this sector.
Choosing a career in aged care is a noble decision. If you need help on how to get a job in aged care, please get in touch with one of our learning experts by contacting Swinburne Open Education for more information on how to take the next steps for your aged care career.