Disability support workers needed
CARINGA Enterprises are in desperate need of more workers to service their 50 or so clients with residential support.
Commonsense and a sense of humour are prerequisites for disability support staff.
Six permanent part-time support worker positions are up for grabs at Caringa, while five other positions were filled last week.
According to Caringa chief executive Janet Ocholla and manager of support services Julie Tranter, the job involves helping people with various levels of disability achieve independence in their homes and social skills in the community.
Staff need to engage their clients in all sorts of activities, including cooking, budgeting, shopping, grooming and socialising.
“It’s 24-hour shift work and there’s a different roster every week,” Janet said.
“All positions include on-the-job training and workers soon achieve a Certificate IV in Disability Work, along with several short courses in food handling, manual handling and aged care, depending on what they are doing.”
The company, which employs 70 disability support staff at the moment, achieved constant growth, Janet said. Eight or nine new positions came into the system last year.
“We have a high retention rate,” she said. “But we’ve had quite a few people move away from the area recently.
“People either love the job or hate it – there’s no middle ground usually.
“Our staff have come from all walks of life ... from mills and the abattoir ... it’s people who are looking to have a life change.
“We like them to have life experience, a sense of humour and commonsense,” Janet said.
Julie said the level of care for clients varied greatly – some might need a couple of hours a week assistance with their budget while others needed 24-hour care.
“It’s never dull and always challenging,” Julie said.
She said staff averaged 30 hours work per week and pay rates started at about $17 per hour. But Janet said that was a base rate and there were penalty rates for night and weekend work, and ‘there was a lot of that’. The base rate goes up with qualifications.
Caringa will host an information night about the positions next Thursday at its office at 26-28 Wharf Street, South Grafton, from 5.30pm.
People who cannot make it to the information night can call into the office for an application pack or phone 6642 5933.