Q&A with Support Worker ZoePublished by GACF Marketing | April 14, 2021
Zoe is a Give a Care disability support worker. This is her story…
Describe your background, and why you became a Disability Support Worker?
I’ve always had an interest in helping people, and in mental health. My mother wears hearing aids, so I have been exposed to the social consequences of deafness, and how disability can lead to people being isolated, or missing out on social experiences.
Before working for Give a Care, I supported an elderly friend who had Parkinson’s. I visited my friend weekly, helped with basic household chores and care that she would have otherwise struggled with, and took her out for lunch.
I felt the impact that my regular visits had on my friend, and how tasks that were simple and quick for me, saved her a lot of energy and pain. The mutual reward and companionship for these visits encouraged me to pursue Support Work as a career.
What do you love about being a Disability Support Worker?
I love the diversity in each shift. I have become very adaptable as a Support Worker. If a client has an idea of something to do, I love being able to say “OK! as long as we meet the goals on your shift plan, we can do that!”.
I have had many new experiences with clients. I enjoy helping the client organise something new, and love seeing my clients get excited about an activity.
Can you share a story or experience with a client that impacted you in some way?
I recently had a valuable experience, where a client and I worked together to help her get an important medical test done.
The client was nervous about the testing, but step by step, the test operator worked with us, and allowed me to act out how the test would work.
Gradually, the client became more comfortable, and was eventually confident enough to sit through the procedure herself.
It was a big experience for all three of us, and we felt proud that we had worked together as a team to help the client be brave despite huge anxiety. I saw the client growing more confident in herself and her ability to overcome panic, and we became a stronger team.
I feel a lot of passion for my work when a client recognises their accomplishments.
What kind of work do you do day-to-day with your clients?
During the shift, I am flexible with the client. With most clients, we plan the shift together, discuss how we’re going to meet their goals, and make sure their needs are met on the shift. I encourage all my clients to speak up if they want to do things differently, or aren’t getting what they want out of the shifts.
All my clients are different. Some of my shifts involve doing fun activities with kids, encouraging practice of good social skills, and building up skills for independence. Some shifts are just about helping my client get involved in the community, have adventures, or get their chores done.
To work with a disability support worker like Zoe, call 1800 945 321 or email [email protected]