Real stories from real people
Find out if you have what it takes from our case studies below.
Catrin Jones Williams
Nursery Child Care Manager
Providing compassionate and thoughtful care to nursery children is Catrin's passion and purpose.
Describing her role as a privilege, the manager of Camau Bach explains how her apprenticeship accelerated her career and enabled her to transition into a senior care role.
Driven by a genuine devotion to care for children and their families, Catrin recognised that she needed to refresh her existing skill set to suit a nursery setting and undertook a Level 3 Apprenticeship.
The training provided her with a background in nursery education and equipped her with the skills needed to support her team.
Her drive to make a difference and her dedicated approach makes Catrin an asset to the care sector.
Assistant Team Manager Fostering
Sue left school at sixteen to become a nursery nurse and worked both in mainstream and special needs education for a local authority. Sue then decided she wanted to go into social work, so spent time working as an assistant social worker for several years in a child protection team. She then undertook a social work degree and a masters’ degree while working and is now an Assistant Team Manager for a local authority Fostering Service. Managing a small team who support recruitment, retention and training for local foster carers.
Q1. What qualities do you think you need to work in care?
Empathy is a key quality and having a genuine interest in people and wanting them to achieve in life. Also caring about people and wanting to make a difference to people’s lives is so important.
Q2. What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Definitely working with the children and families, especially foster children and foster families and foster sons and daughters. Equally so working with a wide range of professionals. It is a very interesting and rewarding role.
Foster Panel Coordinator
Jackie works as a Foster Panel Coordinator for the fostering service in Carmarthenshire. Her role involves recruiting foster carers and taking them through the various stages to become a foster carer and onto panel where they are approved. She finds her role very fulfilling and enjoys meeting potential and new foster carers.
Q1. How long have you worked in the fostering team?
Twelve years in the fostering team. I started working for social care and housing as it was previously called and have worked for twenty-one years in Carmarthenshire local authority, first as an administrative assistant and then I progressed to fostering recruitment on a secondment and this is where I still work.
Q2. What is the main role of the fostering team you work with?
We support our current foster carers and support the recruitment of new foster carers. We are a mix of supervising social workers and recruitment social workers, and we all get along really well.
Richard grew up in foster care and always wanted to give something back to the foster family and local authority that saved his life.
Richard and his wife have two children and they have supported 69 placements and 74 children over the past eleven years. Many of the children they have fostered have complex needs and learning disabilities. Richard is also a foster mentor and helps and supports new foster carers on their fostering journey.
Have you experienced any challenges as a foster carer?
One challenge we had was when we looked after a child who was from a Muslim background. We had to alter our household and support his Muslim culture while still living our own culture. We supported and respected his religion and culture which was very different to our own and we supported him through Ramadan. It was quite difficult, but we got there in the end.
What is the age range of the children you have fostered?
The first child we had was four and now we have an eighteen-year-old. Some children and young people we have fostered have had complex needs. We have also gone into hospital and looked after children in hospital as well.
What has been your most rewarding moment?
Every day is a standout moment. We had one child with disabilities, and he came to us and could not use a knife and fork, was on medication and was shaking a lot and could not write, and two years on he is off all medication and is learning every day, it is lovely to see.
Youth Worker (former Apprentice)
Gareth always had a passion for working with young people and found his calling as a Youth Worker thanks to his apprenticeship with Ceredigion County Council.
It wasn’t long after joining the scheme that Gareth realised how important the role of Youth Workers play in the lives of many vulnerable young people.
Gareth believes the experience he gained during his apprenticeship was a crucial stepping stone to begin his career in social care.
Job vacancies in care
Wales needs more social care workers.
Many people working in social care have made the jump from jobs such as hospitality or retail. Use your transferable skills and apply for roles in your area now.