14 Jul A Day in the Life of a Care Worker – Abiola
We spoke to Healthcare Assistant, Abiola about his role as a care worker at YourCare.
Can you introduce yourself? Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Abiola, I’m from Nigeria.
I came to the UK and began working with a care agency in York.
When I moved to Bradford, I started working at YourCare and the experience I’ve had here has been good. These guys here are great and they always find solutions to any issues I have.
What does a Healthcare Assistant do?
A Healthcare Assistant provides physical, emotional and psychological support to residents. There are things they might not be able to do on their own; you might have to feed them depending on the capacity they have or help them with basic daily activities like washing to help them to live the best life they can. For example, a resident I care for won’t go downstairs for food so we bring him meals and try to encourage him to eat.
How did you come to be Healthcare Assistant?
After I moved to Bradford, I got a call from YourCare and got a job where I was very successful. There was a way that I cared for a resident that was very effective; I discovered he liked to move around and the resident’s sister was very excited by the support I was providing and the response I was getting from him. The manager really trusted me and I became permanent for 3-4 months. Unfortunately, the funding for the resident’s one-to-one care was stopped but I was given another assignment at a nearby care home for another 3-4 months before funding was stopped there too.
Right now I’m waiting and hoping for more shifts; I get calls from other agencies sometimes but because of the love I have for YourCare I’d prefer to wait for them to find something for me.
What advice would you give someone interested in a career in care?
I would tell them to look beyond pay. Care should be something that flows naturally from within.
Why do you think care is important?
Back home in Africa, I was the seventh son of my parents and so my parents were quite advanced in age and required care. I think this is where I developed my passion for care.
Caring for the vulnerable comes quite naturally to me; I often assist strangers outside of work, for example, to cross the road.
I have a degree in economics and a master’s in marketing but I have a passion for this job and caring for the elderly and vulnerable.
How have you developed in the role?
I’ve learned a lot of things in this job, particularly patience. You cannot be an impatient person and be a good carer; you have to be patient with residents and colleagues.
I’m a very accommodating person, I can work with anybody. You need to be a team player, you are there to provide care, you’re not a spectator.
What are key skills essential in your position?
You need to be a people person and a natural carer. You need compassion to support people.
You need to be a professional as well; I know what I’m doing at work, I don’t sit and play with my phone.
What are the main challenges in care work?
I have no difficulties because it flows naturally from within. I imagine the hardest thing would be to lose someone you’ve cared for because you become so close to them. Fortunately, this has not happened to me but even leaving residents because of funding cuts is difficult.
Can you describe a typical day at work?
When I get to work, I politely wake up the resident and give him a shower. I look for his best clothes and help him get dressed. He often asks me about my life and we chat. I take him downstairs and ask him what he wants for breakfast and then I go get it for him; sometimes I assist him to eat if he needs it. Next, I take him to the lounge and wait for his nurse and medication. Then, he often wants to move around and so we go out together to the park. When it’s lunchtime we go back for dinner and play games together to engage him.
What are you most proud of in your career?
The fact that I’m able to impact positively on people’s lives and allow them to enjoy their lives.