This article follows on from our previous one regarding working in the care sector- “Working as a carer – Part 1: the challenges and the benefits”.

It’s worth starting by pointing out that this is a broad sector with many different kinds of jobs available. You may want to work for the NHS, or at a care home, or in the community. Whatever setting you prefer, you should be able to find a role that works for you.

Becoming a care worker or social worker is one of the best ways to make a real difference in the lives of those people who rely on care services.


It goes without saying that the NHS is one of the largest employers of carers in the UK. There are a wide variety of roles available, such as nurses, healthcare assistants, midwives, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and many other professionals.

You can also work within the NHS but in a community setting, for example as a district nurse giving care to patients within their own homes, a school nurse providing healthcare and health advice to students in primary or secondary schools, or as a health visitor giving advice and support to families with young children who may need additional help.

Many care workers also work within residential homes, for example providing medical care to residents but also helping them with washing, dressing, helping them to eat and drink, and more (you should also be aware that care home residents are not necessarily older people- sometimes they may be people of other ages who are living with serious and debilitating illnesses). Home carers, meanwhile, provide a similar service but to people within their own homes. There are also live-in carers, who actually live with those people who require ongoing support in their own homes. Not only do they provide the basic needs such as washing, dressing and eating and drinking, but they also (and just as importantly) provide company.

So you can see that there not only a large number of different environments available for you to work in but also a variety of different types of jobs. Depending on your preferences it should be possible to find work in the care sector that suits your needs and provides you with fulfilling work.

Private health and social care jobs

You may already be wondering whether it would be best to work in the public or private sector. There are attractions to private healthcare work, although generally speaking in the public sector, you may find greater job security, in part because there is a shortage of staff in general across the NHS. The NHS will also provide a generous pension scheme, whereas private pension schemes vary. Conversely, private companies which provide healthcare could potentially encounter problems or even go out of business during these difficult economic times. That said, not all jobs in the private healthcare sector are inherently unstable, and the pay can be more than in the public sector. It is however worth checking how stable a private healthcare company is beforehand- for example, investigate their reputation, find out how long they have been in business and so on.

Social Work

Social work is also wide in scope, for example child and family social workers provide support to families who are experiencing difficulties, or they may also work with children who are in care, to ensure that their needs are met.

Meanwhile, adult social workers work with adults who are experiencing difficulties. These can include older people, those with disabilities, and people with mental health conditions.


Although you don’t need specific qualifications to become a care worker, most employers will expect a basic level of education, such as GCSEs in Maths and English or an equivalent level of schooling. Importantly, you should be able to show that you have the necessary skills and personal qualities for whichever role you apply for. Generally speaking, respect, friendliness, patience and compassion, and the ability to empathise with people are key attributes.

Training courses to become a care worker

At ACI we provide a large number of relevant training courses for those either already working within the care sector or those who may be planning to. You can view a list of our courses here: This page also gives you some useful details about how to enrol on our courses. And if you need further help and guidance, you can phone us on 01291 624 451 or email We can provide training courses at our purpose-built Academy or if you prefer you can complete many of our courses online. Whatever environment you prefer we can accommodate your needs.