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Disability Action Center NW

A Career in Care-Giving

IMG_3977Would you like a career that has on-the-job training, a median salary range of $20,000 a year, and potential job growth rate of 49% to year 2022?
Personal Assistants make their clients lives easier and more comfortable and allow them to remain in their own homes. Having a good personal care assistant – someone who is reliable, caring and flexible – has a real impact on their quality of life.
Personal Care Assistants are trained to assist the elderly and disabled. They work in private homes to help people with daily tasks such as j personal grooming and meal preparation. Light, general housekeeping may also be expected of a personal care assistant.
Centers for Independent Living assistants are hired and trained by the client. Generally they need to be strong and physically fit, because their job may require them to lift people into and out of their beds, chairs, or bathtubs. Assistants should be careful when attempting to physically lift or move a client so they don’t injure themselves in the process. Additional training in the proper ways to lift or use of lifting devices can be provided. Discretion and honesty is another important quality of personal care assistants, because they will be employed within the customer’s private residence.
Not only do assistants help their clients physically, but also psychologically. In the course of doing their jobs, personal care assistants provide needed companionship. If clients have problems or concerns they need to talk about, assistants can lend an ear and let their clients know they’re being listened to. It’s not unusual for assistants to form a bond with the clients they care for on a regular basis. It’s possible to work for the same
client for several years. And many work on holidays to provide the needed care and attention their clients need, expect and deserve.
Duties may include transporting clients to doctor’s appointments, making beds, doing laundry, preparing meals, running errands, or giving medications. They may change bandages, or apply lotion to dry skin areas. Some people may need help bathing or getting to and from the toilet. It is extremely important that the client be allowed to maintain his or her dignity during these times.
For recreation, assistants can play card games or watch movies with their clients, or do crossword puzzles and arts and crafts. Even sitting with clients in the backyard or on the front porch for a couple of hours can be beneficial. The fresh air and sunshine can do wonders! Safety techniques and emergency response procedures are other key elements of training.
A personal care assistant may be one of the most important resources available to someone with a disability. And it can be highly rewarding and an extremely fulfilling job for someone with a good heart!