Can anyone think of any "job" I could do that is connected in some way to mental health/social work that I could do on a part time basis? I'm hoping to qualify as a mental health worker in a few years with a view to going into the social work/psyciatric work when the kids are older and would like some work experience whilst I'm at the bottom of the qualifications pile (I have just started "understanding health and social care" and have no other qualifications).
I am in similar position as I am seriously thinking about enrolling on a social work degree course in 08/09 (2nd degree for me.)
I already work in primary care so have some experience but not very much- I have been in contact with my local voluteering organisation (they have a database of opportunities and try to match to to suitable voluteering posts), and am thinking of training to be a volunteer mediator for the council to get some more experience.
Maybe you could try this?
What is the qual that you have just started doing if you don't mind me asking?
Let me know if you hear of any other oppotunities and good luck!
look for support worker posts - half of my team are made up of people who want and probably will become clinical psychologists, nurses or social workers. in fact recently employed someone who is heading into psychiatry as a consultant.
head for nhsjobs website and search your area - mental health and learning disability services will be a good start. try forensics as well.
and if nursing is where you want to be then you could end up with a paid secondment!