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Care Hero Starting Your Career Tree Adult Social Care Apprenticeships Volunteering and Work Experience   Direct Care Roles Career Change

Adult Social Care Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are work-based training programmes which are funded by the government.

What is an apprenticeship?

Adult Social Care apprenticeships allow you to develop the skills and confidence in to work in different areas of Adult Social Care. They include: 

  • work experience
  • a nationally recognised qualification
  • a paid wage

Who can do an apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are open to everyone who:

  • are aged 16+
  • are living in England
  • are not in full time education

Apprenticeships can be a route into social care or they can give you the opportunity to develop and progress your career if you already work within the sector.

How long does an apprenticeship last?

Usually between 12 and 24 months.

Which level should I do?

You should carefully consider which apprenticeship level is best for you but a rough guide is:

Level 2: Entry into social care

Level's 3, 4 and 5: Progression within social care

Where can I do an Apprenticeship locally?

There are many apprenticeship opportunities in Herefordshire. You can check out some of these training providers:

  • Hoople: A range of health and social care apprenticeships ranging from level 2 to 5. Click here for more information and current opportunities.
  • County Training: Level 2 and 3 apprenticeships across Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford. Click here for more information and current opportunities.

You can also speak to your local school, college or Jobcentre Plus for support  in finding an Apprenticeship or visit the Herefordshire Council website.

This information has been adapted from the Skills for Care, visit the Skills for Care website for more information.

Volunteering and work experience

An estimated 3 million people volunteer in health and social care across England.

What is volunteering?

Volunteering is giving your time and energy to work for the benefit of the community, environment or other cause. It is not for profit and you don't get paid for volunteering, although your employer may offer you expenses such as travel or equipment costs.

Who can volunteer?

Anybody can volunteer.

Why should I consider volunteering?

Volunteering is a great option for people who are not currently looking for paid employment in Social Care but would like to develop skills, meet people and support their community. It is also a fantastic opportunity to see if you like working in Social Care before applying for paid employment. Everyone can benefit from volunteering, for example, if you are:

  • A young person just leaving school or college - volunteering is a great chance to develop skills and gain work experience for your CV or personal statement.
  • In employment - volunteering can have flexible hours. You can volunteer in your free time as a fun and rewarding addition to your life or as a way to develop skills for a career change.
  • Retired - volunteering gives you the opportunity to support your local community without being employed.

Where can I volunteer locally?

 Many charities, organisations and community groups accept volunteers throughout the year. Herefordshire Voluntary Organisations Support Service (HVOSS) helps organisations and volunteers find each other, finding you appropriate opportunities in the local community. They have a database of hundreds of volunteering opportunities across Herefordshire. Visit their website here, or contact them by phone: 01432 343932 or email: 

Alternatively, find a local company you want to support, and contact them over the phone, email, or in person to see whether they're currently offering any volunteer positions.

Direct Care Roles

What is a Direct Care Role?

Many direct care roles can be a great entry into Adult Social Care. These roles work directly with people who need care and support and include a whole range of positions, many of which are described on the career tree including:

  • Support worker
  • Speech and language therapy assistant
  • Physiotherapy assistant
  • Occupational Therapy assistant
  • Activities worker
  • Personal assistant
  • Shared Lives Carer

Click on each role to find out more about it.

Entry Requirements 

Although, it depends on each individual role - some direct care roles do not require specific experience or qualifications in Adult Social Care. This provides a great opportunity to kick start your career and gain experience that will open up a wide range of opportunities in Adult Social Care.


Career Change

If you haven't worked in Adult Social Care but have previously worked in other sectors, this is a great asset. There are so many transferable skills and experiences that you can bring with you from your previous job which will help you in whatever role you choose.

In some circumstances, this experience could be directly relevant to an Adult Social Care role such as:

  • experience working with vulnerable people
  • communication skills
  • time management skills
  • problem solving skills
  • teamwork skills
  • management skills - particularly useful when applying for a management role.

In other circumstances, your experience may not be directly relevant but it will have shaped your attitude and values which can be more important than previous experience and qualifications  when applying for many roles within Adult Social Care.

If you are looking to change your career to contribute to a vital service, gaining job satisfaction, flexibility and variability - you have found what you are looking for!