How Can I Have a Career as a Caregiver?February 17, 2023
For those who don’t want a traditional desk job, a caregiving career may be appealing. In this line of work, you are directly responsible for your client’s well-being. You provide them with a number of diverse services—from cooking to personal care—that affords them the option to age in the comfort of their homes. To many individuals, caregiving is a rewarding, fulfilling career.
Knowing this, you may be wondering: how can I have a career as a caregiver? And what might my responsibilities include?
How can I have a career as a caregiver?
Becoming a paid caregiver is a simpler process than one might think. The Illinois Department on Aging’s Community Care Program was designed to help seniors remain at home through the support of an at-home caregiver. These professionals are trained by a home care agency in the proper regimens of care.
In order to apply to become a caregiver, prospective individuals must meet certain qualifications:
- Must be at least 18 years old
- Have a high school diploma, GED, or one year of comparable experience
- Reside in Illinois and have authorization to work in the U.S.
- Pass a background check
- Complete orientation and training
What are a caregiver’s responsibilities?
An at-home caregiver assists with the non-medical activities of daily living that a senior might struggle with. This means that the care worker cannot administer medications, check vitals, or perform any other medical procedure. They can, however, provide help with the various tasks one completes throughout the day to live healthfully and happily at home.
- Personal care. Certain care activities, like toileting, bathing, and dressing may not be as easy as they once were due to a myriad of health problems. Caregivers help clients maintain their personal hygiene.
- Meal preparation. Whether exhausted by cooking, overwhelmed by planning, or simply unmotivated to make meals after decades of doing so, many seniors are put off by cooking. Caregivers may be responsible for planning, cooking, and cleaning up after meals.
- Medication reminders. Many older adults take a number of medications and vitamins. However, remembering when to take one’s medication, and how much to take, can be difficult. Caregivers can set up a system of medication reminders so seniors stay on top of their medication.
- Light housekeeping. Maintaining one’s home can be physically taxing, especially for seniors. A caregiver may help ensure a senior’s home is clean by assisting with light housekeeping. This could mean vacuuming, disinfecting surfaces, and emptying the trash.
- Laundry. Lifting loads of laundry, folding and ironing clothes, and putting everything away is physically taxing. A caregiver may take over this chore so their client always has clean clothes.
- Errands. Whether driving is no longer safe or mobility issues make it difficult to get around stores, many older adults dread running errands. Their caregiver can manage this task for them—whether that means running to the pharmacy to pick up medicine, or getting groceries.
- Brain games and activities. Keeping one’s brain engaged is an important part of maintaining cognitive skills. Caregivers may assist with, or enjoy together, certain activities that help improve a senior’s mental fitness.
- Companionship and social interaction. An important aspect of keeping one mentally healthy is companionship. In addition to providing the above activities, caregivers act as companions for their elderly clients, as these connections are crucial to their overall health.
Become a caregiver with Home Care Powered by AUAF
If you think a caregiver career path seems like a great opportunity, work with us! For 30 years, we have provided seniors in the greater Chicago area the support they need to age in comfort. To learn more about our caregiving programs, call us at (773) 274-9262.
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