The UK government is launching an urgent campaign to recruit more adult social care staff in England to support care home residents and those being cared for at home.
The ‘Care for Others. Make a Difference’ drive comes in an effort to fill the gaps left by workers who have been forced to self-isolate due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
What jobs are available?
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The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) is urging the unemployed, volunteers and people on furlough to register to fill in for short-term gaps in the social care sector.
Opportunities include personal care - helping people to wash and dress - providing wellbeing support, collecting and delivering supplies, or helping with cooking and cleaning.
The DHSC has said that the exact roles would be based on individual experience and local need, and would be at the discretion of the local authority or care provider concerned.
Candidates do not necessarily need previous experience in social care as training will be provided.
The call for additional staff comes amid concerns that absence rates among care home staff have doubled in recent months as people have been forced to stay off work to quarantine due to coronavirus.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “We are doing everything we can to support the adult social care sector throughout this pandemic and our social care workforce have done an incredible job of helping the most vulnerable in society.
“I am urging the public – whether you are a job-seeker, or looking for a new career – to consider working in care.
“We need short term support while we face the pandemic and to continue to recruit the right people, with the right values, now and into the future.”
The government is also mounting a new advertising campaign to highlight the long-term career prospects in the social care sector, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson stating that it offers “tough but rewarding” opportunities for those considering a career in caring for others.
Almost 1.5 million people work in adult social care and there are many roles available for those looking to make a difference.
Mr Johnson said: “I want to thank carers for all they do to look after our loved ones. Throughout this pandemic, they have gone above and beyond to protect our parents and grandparents, and to provide them with the support and care they need and we would be truly lost without them.
“This exceptional career choice is tough but rewarding, and I would urge anyone who is thinking of a career in care to come forward and join this heroic workforce.”
How to apply
People can find out more about a longer-term career in social care and search for jobs in their area by visiting the Every Day is Different website and will be directed to register their interest in short-term opportunities.
For the short-term scheme, the DHSC said that it would pass on details of those who register an interest online to their local authority and care service providers in their area, who would then contact candidates directly.
Further information on access to training, DBS checks and vaccines will be provided when candidates are contacted.
Those who are taken on will be given suitable training, including in infection prevention controls and use of PPE, and will be offered a vaccination as priority key workers.