Fantastic hours and flexible working
Chloe has been working at Candlelight for around two years. She had always enjoyed caring for people, and had a Level 2 NVQ in Social Care, so decided to give it a go.
Some doubts before starting – but the training really helped
Like most people, I was worried about the personal care aspect of the job. But you quickly learn that it’s something you just have to get on with and you quickly get over it. The training really helped (initial training in the office, and then ‘shadowing’ when you go out with more experienced carers to see how they do it). They give you the option of doing it for one or two days, and if you still don’t feel comfortable you can have an extra day, which was handy.
I was also concerned about not being able to find client’s houses, but the good old Sat Nav sorted that problem out for me, and has taken away the stress of not being able to find a client’s house. Going to somebody’s house for the first time can also be a bit nerve wracking because you don’t know quite how to go about things. But as soon as you’ve done everything once you get into a routine and it’s fine.
I realised that personal care wasn’t actually that bad and that the clients are used to it. You just get on with it, really. The training was handy for that.
Working at Candlelight is great for me because the hours are really flexible and there are often extra hours available if you’re free. And Candlelight are really good about holidays or doctor’s appointments, etc. so long as you give them notice. This works really well for me. You need to make sure you have your own time as well – if you work too much you can end up not enjoying your work so much. But the flexible hours make this possible as long as you’re organised with your time.
If you are ever worried, you can just ring the office and they’ll help you out - you’re never alone.
Everyone in the office is really friendly and supportive and the clients are nice once you get to know them. In that way it’s quite an easy job because once you know what you’re doing you can just go in there, get on with it, have a chat with the client - you get into a routine quite quickly.
If I’m going to see a client for the first time I can just call the office up and they’ll give me a little summary about the client and his/her needs so I have the confidence to go and do the best for them. They’re really good. Also, it’s a good wage if you put the hours in.
The hours are fantastic … and you can pick up extra hours if you want them.
The traits of a good carer
You need to be patient and understanding. You need to be quite calm and be able to just have a chat with clients to see how their day’s been. Mainly, I think just being able to sit down and listen to them and let them take it at their own pace is important. Basically being understanding and a good listener is important. You also need to be quite level-headed – you may walk in to a client’s home and find they’ve had an accident so you need to know what to do and how to deal with it in a calm manner so that the client doesn’t feel upset or worried.
A career in care can be really rewarding. If you think you've got what it takes to support people through homecare, and you live in or around Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire or East Sussex, contact your nearest branch to find out about available opportunities.