Learning disability support workers play a vital role in the care people receive in the community, care homes and hospitals. They support individuals with their care needs, enabling them to learn new skills, grow confidence and lead a rewarding and fulfilling life.
What is a support worker?
A support worker is a healthcare professional who is responsible for delivering bespoke care and support to people in a variety of care settings. They help people with a range of care conditions, including learning disabilities, autism, physical injuries, mental health needs and complex clinical conditions. Support workers are compassionate individuals who prioritise the health and wellbeing needs of their clients and patients whilst ensuring they are able to achieve their goals and aspirations in the safest way possible.
A learning disability support worker job description
A learning disability support worker is a skilled healthcare professional who specialises in delivering care and support to adults and children with learning disabilities and mental health conditions. They prioritise the needs of the individuals they care for and use their experience and knowledge to provide person-centred care that's tailored to the individual’s clinical and emotional needs and wellbeing.
What is the role of a learning disability support worker?
The role of a learning disability support worker can change depending on the needs of the individual in their care. In some cases, they will provide personal care, take the client into the community, and support them with daily tasks, including cooking, cleaning and much more.
To learn what it's like to work as a learning disability support worker at Thornbury Community Services (TCS) read our Q&A with a TCS support worker here.
What are the responsibilities and daily duties of a learning disability support worker?
Working as a learning disability support worker, you’re responsible for providing care and support to the client, which can include:
- Personal care
- Cooking and cleaning
- Administering medication
- Taking the client into the community
- Working collaboratively with your colleagues to support the client
- Monitoring the client's health
What makes a great learning disability support worker?
We’ve asked our Head of Quality Improvement, Rhiannon, who has worked in a range of care settings, including delivering care to those with learning disabilities and autism, what she believes makes a great learning disability support worker.
“A great learning disability support worker is adaptable, forward-thinking and resilient. They aim to improve the quality of life of those in their care and are passionate about driving positive change using their initiative and expertise.”
Top skills and characteristics you need to support people with learning disabilities
Supporting people with learning disabilities requires a range of skills and qualities, including:
- Good communication
Alongside these core skills, you will need a minimum of 12 months of UK-paid care experience working as a learning disability support worker. If you have any care certifications, such as NVQ or a BTEC in health and social care, these will be valuable but are not a requirement.
If you’re applying for a learning disability support worker role with TCS, don’t worry if you don’t have any medication management or physical intervention training experience, as we provide this at TCS to ensure our support workers have the latest knowledge and skill set to care for those in the community.
Career progression opportunities for learning disability support workers
There are many career progression opportunities for learning disability support workers. If you’re hoping to become more senior working as a support worker, you can progress to a Team Leader. Another career route is to work in the Operations Care Team and be responsible for overseeing clients care and working collaboratively with nurses and support workers to ensure they are able to attend their shifts and keep the clients safe at all times.
At TCS, we’re creating development opportunities for our support workers to ensure they can have long-lasting and meaningful careers and progress further. If you’re interested in joining our team as a support worker, check out our latest jobs here.
If you wish to speak to our dedicated Recruitment Resourcing Team about our support worker opportunities, please get in touch with them on 0333 323 3762