Everyone working in social care needs English, number, digital and employability skills including team work and problem solving skills. What core skills do I need to work in social care outlines some of the skills you need and has short activities to help you think about transferable skills from your previous experiences.
There are also some specific skills needed to work in this role. These include:
- the ability to motivate people
- good organisational skills
- digital skills to research and book activities online
- time management and ability to schedule and plan ahead.
You don’t necessarily need any qualifications to become an activities worker. What’s really important is that you have the right values and behaviours to work in social care.
Your employer might ask that you have qualifications showing good English and number skills such as GCSE A-C in English and maths. It might also be helpful to have a social care qualification such as a Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Health and Social Care, but you can do these once you start the job.
It might be useful to have experience working in a similar role or with vulnerable adults. You could gain this experience through a work placement, from your personal life, through volunteering or as part of a traineeship or apprenticeship.
If you’re interested in working as an activities coordinator, there’s lots of advice about finding a role on the Starting your career page. You could look online or in your local newspaper to find vacancies, or you might want to contact local care providers to ask them directly.
You could also apply to do an apprenticeship as an activities worker. You can find out more about social care apprenticeships, including a link to live vacancies, on the Thinking of doing an apprenticeship page.
When you start in your role you should do an induction which includes training necessary for your role such as health and safety, first aid and moving and handling. You might also receive specific training such as autism awareness, communication skills or working with people with dementia.
When in your role you could do a vocational qualification such as a Diploma in Health and Social Care or continuing professional development qualification such as an award or certificate in activity provision.
Your employer might pay for you to do these qualifications (they could apply for the Workforce Development Fund to help), or you could apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to pay for them yourself.
There may be opportunities to progress into more senior roles relating to activities or you might choose to go into other roles such as a care worker, senior care worker, rehabilitation worker or a personal assistant. Read more on the Job roles in social care page.