residential worker: Childrens home

Discuss any aspect of applying for posts or courses (apart from the clinical psychology doctorate which has its own forum section), CVs, application forms, etc

residential worker: Childrens home

Postby bright_red » Mon Jul 12, 2010 10:04 pm

I couldn't find anything on the search button for this.
I am trying to apply for the post of a residential worker in a childrens home. I have loooads of bits and pieces of random children related experience but nothing concrete and nothing that's been paid work or related to looked after children really.
I feel like I'm filling in the application in the dark really. I wondered if anyone had done work as a residential person? Any pointers or general info anyone can give me on working with LAC in this sort of environment. I've mainly been a support worker..am I aiming too high and being ridiculous? By using my experience as a support worker am I going to be twisting my experience so hard that the application might look far fetched? What are the main needs of LAC? help help. Thanks.
User avatar
bright_red
 
Posts: 148
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 6:29 am

Want to advertise with us? You or your business could fill this space. Email clinpsyforum@gmail.com for information.

Postby Jem88 » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:44 am

Hey bright_red,

I've been working in a children's residential home for almost 2 years now. I got the job whilst still doing my undergrad degree and have had no other experience as an AP/RA. Can I ask where you're actually applying for the job?

In my own case I applied through my local council, by sending off a CV and covering letter, then had to go through 3 interviews. Therefore I'm not entirely familiar with the application process in your case. However I would say that you don't necessarily need concrete experience as a childcare worker - by reflecting on you're experiences you DO have will really show them the skills you already have, and the skills you wish to develop my gaining the post. You should show much enthusiasm when applying to the job (i.e. wanting to get to know the residents, building up a good relationship and trust with them, being able to handle difficult situations such as physical violence..)

It's a truely amazing job to do - I've got to work with children from all kinds of backgrounds (Learning Difficulties, ADHD, Autism, Eating Disorders, Self Harm, Elimination Disorders etc etc..). If in the future it really gives you a lot of support when applying to AP posts and even the Doctorate (well, I hope!).

Good luck! If you have any other specific questions regarding the actual job itself, just ask!

Jem
User avatar
Jem88
 
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2009 5:18 pm

Postby bright_red » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:39 pm

Thanks for the reply Jem. It was helpful. Id written the post in a bit of a panic as the deadline for the post was closing soon. The job is in Lancaster. I haven't heard anything back yet but I have my fingers super crossed. Just out of interest how do you deal with physical violence in the childrens home you work in? How many kids do you work with? What does the work involve? What do you do whilst they're at school? Do you do night shifts? What are they like? How much do you get paid? The reason I was asking if I was aiming to high was because the pay was like advertised as 19,000 or something which seemed high to me? How quickly do kids pass through the home? Do some of them stay for a long time and do others leave quickly? In the person spec they asked for a working knowledge of the childrens act 1989...and what does that really mean on a day to day basis? Is there lots of law and court involved in this sorta stuff? How much work do you do with parents?
I literally have no idea lol and I think I'm interested to know, even if I don't get an interview. Any help would be muchhh appreciated. Thank yoou.
User avatar
bright_red
 
Posts: 148
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 6:29 am

Postby Jem88 » Sun Jul 18, 2010 2:10 pm

Glad I can be of help!

how do you deal with physical violence in the childrens home you work in? - This entirely depends upon each individual young person. I am fully trained in 'TCI' - a system used by our social services that involve emotional counselling and physical restraints that we would employ to a child who appeared to be escalating from their baseline behaviours. Obviously a physical restraint would not be carried out on a young person who is physically larger and stronger than I am, or a child with any sort of physical disability. Therefore in such instances, a number of techniques would be used depending upon whats in their individual care plans.

How many kids do you work with? - In the larger unit I work in there is a maximum of 12 bedrooms, divided into 2 6-bed units. The smaller one has only 4.

What does the work involve? What do you do whilst they're at school? - Shifts are normally broken down into early, lates and nights. Each shift is different, on an early weekday the shift will involve helping the young people get up, get themselves organised for school, help them with breakfast, and sometimes accompanying the younger ones to school. Then the rest of the day would be filled with housework duties, such as catching up with laundry etc. You might also have a number of calls to make to social workers etc, updating them on the young people. A late shift (and an early weekend) would normally involve helping the young people get themselves organised after school, helping with homework etc. Outings may also be planned in the evening where you would spend some time with a small number of young people (ie. going to the cinema, going swimming, going to the gym..). During all shifts you must be vigilant, and sometimes some young people may require full supervision.

Do you do night shifts? What are they like? - Yes I do the occasional nightshift. They're quite easy-going. It would involve settling the younger ones to bed, getting their suppers etc. With the older ones we usually sit up and watch a DVD/TV then get them settled to their beds at bedtimes. Then the rest of the night involves catching up on laundry, making sure unit is tidy, working through money (petty cash and organising pocket monies..). After that you're pretty much free to do as you please, and keep an eye on the young people throughout the night.

How much do you get paid? - I'm only on a sessional contract, but I get paid £8.88 an hour, which is the average for sessional support worker wages. I'm not sure how this works out on a full-time contract, you may (and probably do) get paid a little more. Again, it depends upon your employer.

How quickly do kids pass through the home? Do some of them stay for a long time and do others leave quickly? - Yes exactly. We've had some young people who have been with us for 5/6 years. Others stay for a few days/weeks and get re-admitted back home. This usually depends upon their reasons for being in the unit and individual circumstances at the family home.

In the person spec they asked for a working knowledge of the childrens act 1989...and what does that really mean on a day to day basis? Is there lots of law and court involved in this sorta stuff? - I must admit I don't have an in-depth knowledge of the childrens act 1989, but I think it just means that every child has a right to voice their opinions on their own circumstances, their own reasons for being in residential care, and that they deserve the right of privacy. I think it would just be common sense stuff really!

How much work do you do with parents? - Again this depends on each individual child. Some have no contact whatsoever with family members so we do little to no work with their parents. Others have quite regular contact with families (sometimes at home, others in the unit). With these cases, we have a lot of contact with parents, by updating them on the phone and seeing them when they come to the unit.

Hope this helps!
User avatar
Jem88
 
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2009 5:18 pm

Postby choirgirl » Sun Jul 18, 2010 6:36 pm

Really helpful info Jem88 - it would make a great addition to our Wiki area, if you have time... :wink:
"Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." - Red Auerbach
User avatar
choirgirl
 
Posts: 1435
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 9:41 am
Location: Midlands

Postby bright_red » Sun Jul 18, 2010 9:48 pm

Wow. Thank you so much Jem. You've been really really helpful. It must have taken you some time to type all that out for me. Really appreciate it!! xx
User avatar
bright_red
 
Posts: 148
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 6:29 am

Postby Jem88 » Mon Jul 19, 2010 2:38 pm

You're welcome bright_red!

I'd be happy to work on a wiki, will keep you posted.
User avatar
Jem88
 
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2009 5:18 pm

Postby ImaginePsych » Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:04 pm

hi, after bein phoned for an interview today for a residential worker with young persons with challenging behaviour this post has been so helpful. Again, thank you so much!
ImaginePsych
 
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:37 pm

residential worker: Childrens home

Postby RossPsych » Tue Dec 10, 2013 9:39 am

Jem88 wrote:Glad I can be of help!

how do you deal with physical violence in the childrens home you work in? - This entirely depends upon each individual young person. I am fully trained in 'TCI' - a system used by our social services that involve emotional counselling and physical restraints that we would employ to a child who appeared to be escalating from their baseline behaviours. Obviously a physical restraint would not be carried out on a young person who is physically larger and stronger than I am, or a child with any sort of physical disability. Therefore in such instances, a number of techniques would be used depending upon whats in their individual care plans.

How many kids do you work with? - In the larger unit I work in there is a maximum of 12 bedrooms, divided into 2 6-bed units. The smaller one has only 4.

What does the work involve? What do you do whilst they're at school? - Shifts are normally broken down into early, lates and nights. Each shift is different, on an early weekday the shift will involve helping the young people get up, get themselves organised for school, help them with breakfast, and sometimes accompanying the younger ones to school. Then the rest of the day would be filled with housework duties, such as catching up with laundry etc. You might also have a number of calls to make to social workers etc, updating them on the young people. A late shift (and an early weekend) would normally involve helping the young people get themselves organised after school, helping with homework etc. Outings may also be planned in the evening where you would spend some time with a small number of young people (ie. going to the cinema, going swimming, going to the gym..). During all shifts you must be vigilant, and sometimes some young people may require full supervision.

Do you do night shifts? What are they like? - Yes I do the occasional nightshift. They're quite easy-going. It would involve settling the younger ones to bed, getting their suppers etc. With the older ones we usually sit up and watch a DVD/TV then get them settled to their beds at bedtimes. Then the rest of the night involves catching up on laundry, making sure unit is tidy, working through money (petty cash and organising pocket monies..). After that you're pretty much free to do as you please, and keep an eye on the young people throughout the night.

How much do you get paid? - I'm only on a sessional contract, but I get paid £8.88 an hour, which is the average for sessional support worker wages. I'm not sure how this works out on a full-time contract, you may (and probably do) get paid a little more. Again, it depends upon your employer.

How quickly do kids pass through the home? Do some of them stay for a long time and do others leave quickly? - Yes exactly. We've had some young people who have been with us for 5/6 years. Others stay for a few days/weeks and get re-admitted back home. This usually depends upon their reasons for being in the unit and individual circumstances at the family home.

In the person spec they asked for a working knowledge of the childrens act 1989...and what does that really mean on a day to day basis? Is there lots of law and court involved in this sorta stuff? - I must admit I don't have an in-depth knowledge of the childrens act 1989, but I think it just means that every child has a right to voice their opinions on their own circumstances, their own reasons for being in residential care, and that they deserve the right of privacy. I think it would just be common sense stuff really!

How much work do you do with parents? - Again this depends on each individual child. Some have no contact whatsoever with family members so we do little to no work with their parents. Others have quite regular contact with families (sometimes at home, others in the unit). With these cases, we have a lot of contact with parents, by updating them on the phone and seeing them when they come to the unit.

Hope this helps!


I think this is a fab reply! I realise the thread is really old now but I know when I was searching for information about working in a children's home, details of the day to day job were sparse to say the least.

I would be happy to add my experiences and work on a wiki entry for the forum if that would be helpful - Although demanding it's a role has taught me SO much, and I think sharing the realities and scope of the work is really important for anyone considering a position supporting vulnerable young people.
User avatar
RossPsych
 
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:31 pm


Return to Applications

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest