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How did you become an elderly carer with no experience?

(6 Posts)
emilytheoutsider Tue 10-Nov-15 12:19:27


I am currently a full time mum, youngest being 2. I would like to go back to work at some point. I always wanted to work with elderly people. I worked in a community centre for old people for 3 weeks in my school work experience and I remember how much I enjoyed it ever since - but this was 25 years a go! I have since became an engineer after uni but now sahm. I like to do something everyday to make a difference to someone's life, I don't mind cleaning, bathing etc.

The problem is that I am a rather shy person, I do try to talk to everyone but sometimes I run out of conversations which can be so awkward! Do you still think I can be one? If so, how did you begin and manage childcare out side of normal hours? We have few local childminders but only do "normal hours".

Thank you in advance!

ppandj Tue 10-Nov-15 12:28:35

I'm not sure if this is the correct path- but look at NVQ courses in your local area. You could volunteer with a home from hospital service, Marie Curie or a befriending service to get some experience. I think you would only have to pay for your DBS check? That would be a good way to test the water. Once you have got experience there are lots of opportunities to care in residential homes or in people's own homes. It's such an important role and can be very rewarding as you truly do make such a difference, it is a shame the role isn't given more recognition imo. Good luck!

youlemming Fri 13-Nov-15 10:08:33

My sister had no experience but started working in a care home and they helped her get on the relevant courses so she trained on the job.
She doesn't have children so I haven't any insight into non std hrs childcare but you could try your local council family services website or a site called

BigGreenOlives Fri 13-Nov-15 10:12:01

I don't think you have to pay for a dbs check if it's done through a charity for a voluntary position. DD had to have one as a volunteer for Age Uk (although she was only 16 at the time).

SecretSpy Fri 13-Nov-15 10:17:00

Nursing and residential homes take on staff without previous experience all the time, and usually offer NVQs and other training in the job.

You will need to show common sense and a caring nature, and willingness to deal with bodily fluids and death - it can be challenging but is also very rewarding.

Curiouserandcuriouser30 Fri 13-Nov-15 10:35:00

I worked as a care assistant for a year a while ago. I just sent CVs and cover letters to several care homes in my local area, and I got a few interviews and then job offers even though I had no experience of care work.
I accepted a job in the care home that I felt most comfortable in (by that I mean that the staff were friendly, they showed me around when I went for my interview, and the residents seemed happy.) The company organised training (manual handling, spotting abuse in vulnerable adults, food hygiene, fire safety, that sort of thing) for me, and you didn't have to have an NVQ to start, though everyone had to be at least working towards one.
I really enjoyed it! And don't worry about running out of things to say, it is a lot easier to talk to someone when you have a "job" to do, iykwim. So if you go (for example) to get someone washed and dressed, there is always something to talk about. ("Would you like to wear this blouse or this one?" "This soap smells lovely, doesn't it?" "Oh your daughter is coming to visit today, that's nice" etc etc) You get used to talking to people and will be able to find something to say about anything.
I found the job really rewarding, though it was quite hard work. I didn't have DCs when I worked there, but many of the people who did had arrangements, like the mostly worked morning shifts or only did long days (for us these were 8am to 9pm) at the weekend when alternative childcare could be arranged. So maybe that would be an option for you?

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