Caregiving is a noble profession. You get to make a true difference in your patient’s life. It also allows you to work flexible hours – especially if you eventually set up your own elderly care franchise – and benefit from on-the-job training. If you are patient, compassionate, empathetic, an excellent communicator, and enjoy caring and the company of seniors, you should consider a career in caregiving. Read on for five ways to become a senior caregiver.
Join a training program
The first step to becoming a professional caregiver for the elderly is by enrolling in a training program. A training program equips you with sufficient knowledge and skills to offer specialized care, especially for seniors who have dementia and Alzheimer’s. Aged care courses also help you to gain hands-on experience in senior care and provide an opportunity to network with potential employers.
Be sure to choose a program that awards certifications at the end of the course. Certificates open doors to more opportunities in your caregiving journey and can come in handy when you want to further your career.
You do not have to wait until you are formally employed to care for the elderly. If you really have a passion for senior caregiving, consider volunteering to help your friends, neighbors, and family care for their elderly loved ones. You could help by handling household chores or tending to their needs as their loved ones focus on other activities. This will bring joy to the family members, comfort the seniors, and a much-needed experience on your end. Be sure to mention your voluntary work when applying for jobs, as this could give you a competitive edge during interviews.
First aid and CPR training
Seniors often suffer from limited mobility. This makes them more vulnerable to falls and injuries. They also have a higher risk of heart attacks and other health complications. You should consider enrolling for first aid and CPR training to acquire relevant knowledge and skills to administer proper care before emergency response arrives. Having a first aid and CPR training certificate is also an effective way to show potential employers that you know what you are doing.
Join support groups
Find and enroll yourself in various caregiver support groups in your locality. This allows you to meet other individuals with the same passion, so you can exchange ideas, tips and learn from their experiences. If you are looking to make caregiving a long-term profession, do not limit yourself to local support groups. Connect with other caregivers on social platforms such as Facebook. This way, you may get job opportunities through networking.
Choose a suitable type of senior care
Senior caregiving is a broad field. You could either offer personal care, companion care, transportation services, household tasks, or medical-approved care. You should choose the kind of care you want to provide then equip yourself with the relevant subject knowledge. For instance, you may need to have a bachelor’s degree, have basic health care knowledge, and be state-licensed to offer medical-approved care.
Caregiving helps make a difference in the lives of your patients. It also gives you a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Consider joining a training program or support group, enrolling for first aid and CPR training, and volunteering to become a senior caregiver.