What to expect

Disability Support Workers make life better

Expect a challenging yet rewarding experience when you become a disability support worker. You’ll be working for a consumer base with different levels of physical need in their private homes assisting with daily living tasks. The goal is to keep consumers living independently in the comfort of their own homes for as long as possible. You’ll be making a difference to the lives of many consumers under your care by building independence for those who’ve been losing their independence.

Disability Support Workers expect positive change

Your duties will be very flexible and uniquely tailored to the needs of the individual you’re caring for. Expect to be hands on and active while you bend, lift and transfer consumers in a safe way. You’ll generally work with a small group of consumers that you get to know well over time and build strong relationships with. Hours will also vary and shifts can involve early morning, evening, weekend work or overnight stays.

Disability Support Workers help clients to reach goalsHere are some common duties:

  • personal care such as showering and bathing
  • grooming and dressing, getting ready for work
  • meal preparation and assistance with eating meals
  • domestic household tasks such vacuuming, washing, light house work
  • community access such as shopping, banking, appointments and
    an occasional outing to the footy or other destinations
  • assistance with self medication
  • bowel care support

Disability support work is also a unique experience for many reasons:

  • your workplace is a client's home
  • you're often working in isolation from other support workers
  • support work involves care which is personal and often intimate nature
  • power balance between you and your client is often changing and unclear eg. a client is dependent on you for assistance while you're dependent on the client for your income
  • your employer is Independence Australia, yet your client will also want to be your boss
  • learning how to work with each person and their unique situation and needs can be hard

In recognition of the challenging and unusual working conditions for disability support workers, click here for tips to assist you in your role as a carer.