Live in care is one of the options for those living with dementia or Alzheimer’s, so if you are interested in working in this sector, it is one option to consider. You will find more opportunities if you have the flexibility to live in. Many older people appreciate being cared for in their own homes; the familiar environment and knowing that their own belongings are still at hand will do much to reassure them at what can be a stressful time. It is a big step moving into a care home, and best to be avoided if at all possible.
Scotland is a big country with miles of open countryside, small towns and villages and of course, the islands present a particular transport issue. Some problems of getting to a job may, in fact, be resolved by living in; otherwise you will almost certainly need your own private transport. However, some driving may be necessary for the job.
Working through a reputable agency such as Guardian Carers, you will undergo a rigorous selection process including a DBS check, achieving a first aid certification and Safeguarding training. There will be a selection interview and you will need references.
There is an increasing demand for the ability to speak more than one language. If you are fluent in other languages this will be a bonus in securing a role. If you speak Gaelic, this will certainly be an advantage in working with clients in the Western Isles.
The work of a live in carer is varied and can include the following:
The work of a live in companion housekeeper could include some of the above, but not the personal care. It may also have added extra responsibilities such as:
The work of a carer cook is more specialised. You would be expected to have some experience and/or qualifications in catering and to work with your clients towards developing interesting and healthy menus to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Remember that older people are often less active, so diet is to be monitored closely.
It is also really important to be sensitive to dietary preferences, intolerances and allergies. It would not be uncommon to have to cater for a vegan diet or for the need to avoid gluten or dairy produce. Sensitivity and discussions with other members of the family and the agency will be necessary, particularly in cases where the client may be forgetful and is living with dementia.