Posted: 19 November 2021
In honour of International Men’s Day, we’re discussing the importance of encouraging men into a career in social care. Our data tells us that currently only 18% of the social care workforce are male.
We spoke with one organisation to find out more about the work they’ve been doing to encourage more males into social care roles and spoke with one of their male colleagues about his experience of working in care.
We spoke with Yvonne Obuaya, Managing Director of Curado Group, which provides residential care for people with mental health conditions. Curado has been working hard to encourage more men into the social care sector and to recruit males for roles within their organisation. Yvonne told us why this is important for the organisation and how they’ve been approaching this.
Curado has been intentional in its recruitment efforts to employ more males. We’ve also been utilising the impact of our male I Care… Ambassadors to support our efforts in recruiting more men into the sector. The outcome of which has been prospective applications from male candidates.
Curado was involved in a consultancy project with Kingston University. The project lasted three months and involved working with undergraduate students at the university who researched ways in which we can increase our male workforce from 30% to 50%. The researchers ran focus groups with male carers and senior management to devise effective marketing strategies that would support the company in this initiative.
There needs to be more nationwide campaigns about men in social care to increase the awareness of the value that male care workers bring to the sector. Other initiatives which would encourage more men into a career in social care would be recruitment fairs specifically targeted at men and focus groups led by male I Care… Ambassadors at job centres, schools, colleges, and universities. This would allow us to specifically target males and show them how social care can provide a valuable career for them and the important impact that they can have on the sector.
Augustine Tawia Kyereme is a mental health support worker at Curado. He has a Bachelor’s degree in education and a Master’s in business administration. He told us about his career in social care including his current role with Curado, and why he thinks it’s important to encourage more males into a career in social care.
I’ve worked in care for nearly seven years now. I started my social care career with employment agencies in Sutton, and I’ve since worked in homes for older people, nursing homes, homes for people with a learning disability, and now as a mental health support worker at Curado
I was inspired to work in care after graduating from university, during which time I had also been working as a cleaner. I considered social care to be a respected career path and it was a sector that was open to anyone to join – you didn’t need any specific qualifications or experience, and there was a large number of roles available.
It’s important that we encourage men to work in care because as with any sector there should be a fair gender balance across our workforce. We also know that some males who draw on care and support prefer to have male support workers, particularly for tasks such as personal care, and they may feel they can relate better to a male care worker.
This can also mean that males who draw on care and support are more likely to open up to male workers, and it’s important that the people we support are able to be open and honest so that we can provide the best level of care.
Because there are more women than men currently working in social care it’s often considered as a ‘female sector’ and that shouldn’t be the case, as it’s a rewarding and fulfilling sector for everyone to work in.
I would recommend working in the sector to any men considering a career in care. You get to make a difference in people’s lives, you can be offered competitive pay and many organisations also offer additional benefits such as social events, reward vouchers and other incentives.
Hear more from Augustine and his fellow male mental health support worker colleague Connar, and learn more about Curado’s work, in their video discussing the importance of men in social care.
Find advice and guidance to support with recruitment on our recruitment webpages.