Mark Watson, a Community Support Worker by trade, loves being at the front line in providing care and support to people with physical or neurological impairments.
“As a Community Support Worker I’m not here to do things for them. I’m here to enable them to reach their full potential. Seeing people develop, improve, become independent. It’s a really amazing feeling.”
There is a looming workforce shortage across healthcare, aged care, and disability support sectors with around 16,000 more workers needed in the next three years. Employers are encouraging young people to consider starting a career in these vital sectors with many providing on-the-job training and apprenticeships.
Watson is grateful for the support of his workplace, Laura Fergusson Trust in Wellington, who gave him the opportunity to complete an apprenticeship in Brain Injury Rehabilitation Support through industry training organisation, Careerforce. He said the apprenticeship has given him the essential skills he needed for his job.
“This apprenticeship has been essential for me, I can apply all my learning straight away and I get the relevant qualification. I’m also getting paid and getting onsite experience.”
He encourages young people to consider a career in the sector and get trained on-the-job as he did.
“I would honestly say go for it. It’s such a rewarding job. You’re seeing the people, you’re seeing the results and you’re there making a difference.”