A disability support worker provides assistance and support for people with an intellectual, sensory and/or physical disability living in a community-based home, day programme, or in their own home. You might be employed in a professional support environment or travel to a person’s home to help with daily tasks.
You don’t need formal qualifications at first. It’s more about being the right sort of person.
It’s likely you’ll be expected to train on-the-job for the New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing Levels 2 and 3.
More advanced and specialised roles in disability support work will benefit from a Level 4 qualification and higher.
An historic pay equity settlement for care and support workers in New Zealand in 2017 means that care and support workers are now recognised and rewarded based on their qualifications, or their experience.
More information from Careerforce about qualifications in the disability support sector.
Initially you’ll find yourself in roles like these:
As you progress, new opportunities will open up:
Support worker Brett works closely with Will, who suffered a significant stroke in 2016. With Brett’s help, Will can keep in touch with his community and his passions.
Community support worker Kiri helps Madison achieve her goals. Madison finds it a real honour to have Kiri as her facilitator, and as a friend.
Many employers will support on-the-job training where you’ll have the opportunity to earn as you learn, get practical skills and work towards achieving a nationally recognised qualification without taking on a student loan.
Check out these sites to find the right job for you!