How Support Workers can help change people's lives around - Ryan Paul
A job as a support worker can dramatically change people’s lives for the better. You can play a vital role in turning their lives around and helping them to live a more independent and secure lifestyle.
One such person to have turned his life around with the support of our colleagues is Ryan Paul, who openly admits he fell into the trap of drugs and associating with the wrong crowd.
What impact can I have on people as a support worker?
By taking on a support worker role, you can quite literally help people turn their lives around. By helping them to make better choices, supporting them to find work or accommodation, or being a friendly face and lending an ear when they need to talk, you’re an important person to them.
Ryan was homeless after getting into drugs and eventually giving up his flat in Lincoln. He ended up at our Sleaford HRS scheme.
Ryan said, “I was still on drugs when I first went there. I told myself I was ready to start a new life and I battled every single day to get off what I was on and the staff were there every single day to help. As long as you keep your head down and focus on what you want to do, they’ll help. They’re fantastic.
Every single one of them is great and I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them.”
How can I become a support worker?
There are lots of ways that you can get into working as a support worker. From the more traditional educational route to apprenticeships and learning on the job, there's going to be a route that's right for you.
Not all employers will require you to obtain certain qualifications to become a support worker, but by having these on your CV, you'll be in good stead for making a breakthrough.
Some of the qualifications you could require include:
Apprenticeships are a great way to develop occupational skills and experience through on-the-job training. These are a good way to earn while you learn and develop the skills, knowledge and experience you need to go on to have a successful career as a support worker.
Apprenticeships can take about 18 months to complete, so keep that in mind if you're considering this approach.
Work experience/on-the-job training
Don't be afraid to volunteer and secure work experience placements to get a taste for what a support worker job is really like. This is all valuable experience for your CV and could also provide you with important contacts for when you come to apply for jobs.
You'll also develop key skills and knowledge needed for the role.
Will I be well paid as a support worker?
Average salaries for a support worker in the UK can vary, but once you’re in the job, there are usually opportunities to progress and with that comes an increased salary.
As well as remuneration, you get the satisfaction of knowing you’re making a real difference to people’s lives.
You can look at the average salaries of certain roles, including support worker, online using websites such as totaljobs.
How’s Ryan now?
“I’ve got everything sorted out now, I’m flying,” is how Ryan sees his situation now.
He’s now in his own home and has his sights set on finding a job and learning to drive and he puts it all down to the help and support he received from his support workers at Sleaford HRS.
“My new house is perfect,” he added.
“I’m a five-minute walk from town, I can do my shopping easily and I’ve got all my bills set up thanks to the resettlement support from the staff at Sleaford HRS.
“I’m doing really well now and I’m off the drugs.
“My relationship with my parents is superb now and they can come and visit me in my own place. It’s nice to be able to put the kettle on for them!