What you need to know about becoming a Disability Support Worker
Becoming a disability support worker is one of the most rewarding and fulfilling jobs you can find. It’s a career that provides opportunity for continual learning, introduces you to people from all walks of life, and allows you to give back to the community and to those in need. Some would even say it’s the best job in the world.
But being a disability support worker can also be challenging, will force you to think on your feet, and can mean holding a lot of responsibility. Becoming a disability support worker takes patience, an eagerness to learn and help, and of course the ability to show empathy and resilience.
Here at Real Community Services we have a team of dedicated disability support workers who do a wonderful job of looking after our patients both through in-home care and community participation programs. We recently asked our team to put together a list of things they think someone should know if they considering becoming a disability support worker and what traits they think help make a good disability support worker.
We spoke to our long term Support Worker Sally (5 years + career) and these are the main things Sally shared in what you need to know about becoming a disability support worker:
- Be prepared for shift work, early mornings, and working weekends
- Each patient will be different and it will take time to build rapport with each one
- And there will be some patients that no matter how hard your try, you just won’t be able to build rapport with
- There will be tasks that are personal and often intimate in nature
- It can be hard to say goodbye to a longstanding client.
- There are days when you will work alone with clients.
- Every day will be different and you will never stop learning
- You will become part of a wonderfully supportive community
What makes a great disability support worker:
- Empathy and compassion – being able to put yourself in another person’s shoes and build a true connection
- Patience – remember that simple tasks can take longer than usual when you are helping someone with a disability
- Passion – to be able to pick yourself up after a hard day
- Adaptability – no two days, situations, or clients are the same
Interested in becoming a disability support worker with us here at Real Community Services? We aim to provide flexible employment arrangements to support our staff and their families and offer opportunities for our team to engage with us and the wider community. We also provide ongoing training opportunities for professional improvement with many of our coordinators, administration, finance and management previously working as support workers.