What is in Involved in Becoming a Live In Carer?
If you love working with people and want to make a real difference to someone’s life, then live in care could be just the career for you.
If you are a people person and want a job that will give something back to the community, then have you thought of a career in live in care? The role of a live-in care worker varies enormously from person to person, but essentially, you will be providing support to those who need it most, and improving their lives by assisting with their daily tasks and attending to their needs.
There are all sorts of people who might need to find a live in carer. Most often, you will be working with the elderly, but there are others, such as those who are disabled or have learning disabilities, who might also need live-in support.
As such, it can be enormously challenging work, but also incredibly rewarding. Working with the most vulnerable members of the community also carries immense responsibility. If you still think you have what it takes to become a live in carer, read on.
What work is involved?
The exact nature of the work will, of course, vary between individuals, depending on their own needs and abilities. In general, however, your duties will usually include the following: personal care, such as helping with washing, getting dressed and supporting general daily routines; supervising medication; helping with general household chores, such as cooking and cleaning.
More important than all of these, though, is that you will be providing companionship to those who need it most.
What qualifications and experience do I need?
A live-in carer is different to a nurse, and you would not be expected to perform duties that need special medical training (such as injections or wound care).
As far as formal qualifications go, all you need is some suitable experience in the care industry and an appropriate qualification, such as an NVQ/Diploma 2-3 in Health and Social Care.
The most important prerequisites, though, are compassion, patience, maturity, and presence of mind to deal with any emergencies that arise. You also need to have some basic cooking ability and a willingness to do whatever is necessary around the house.
Finally, a good sense of humour is an absolute essential to get you and your client through the more difficult times.
Note that all care workers need to complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) test.
What are the hours like?
You might be a live-in carer, but that does not mean working 24/7! Live-in carers typically work 8-10 hour shifts, but having said that, you need to be flexible, and you might find yourself on-call or having to work longer hours from time to time.
How much would I earn?
Salaries vary depending on your experience and the level of care you are providing.
As a broad guide, junior care workers are looking at a salary of around £14,000 per year, while specialists might earn up to twice as much.
There are additional benefits, such as uniforms, free room and board when working in a live-in care position, and extra earnings to be made for working on public holidays. See our live in care jobs page for our latest positions.