Employability Services support project encouraging diversity in the social care sector

Published: 16-10-2017
Employability Services support project encouraging diversity in the social care sector

Care Plus Group Employability Services are part of an innovative new Skills for Care project that encourages adult social care employers to ‘look past the label’ and recruit people from traditionally under-represented groups.

The Care Plus Group already provide employment opportunities for all ages through a multi award winning ‘pathway model’ of initiatives, which include voluntary placements, apprenticeships and internships.

As part of the Skills for Care project, Employability will use this tried and tested model to support people from under-represented groups, including long term unemployed people, people with mental ill-health and disabled people, on a 13 week voluntary placement. This will include work experience, accredited and non-accredited training and support to find employment.

Sharon Stead, Employability Services Manager, is confident about the benefits this project can bring:
“Employability Services support the skills and worklessness agenda by providing employability opportunities through a ‘Pathway Model’ of initiatives including Voluntary Placements, Apprenticeships and Internships.
“The service acts as a cost effective training and recruitment ‘hub’ to support the wider health and social care sector to ‘grow their own’ workforce.
“Employability Services are delighted to have the opportunity to work in partnership with Skills for Care to deliver a 13 week structured voluntary placement pilot project which is specific to supporting participants from underrepresented groups to gain skills and employment within the health and social care sector. Projects like these are vital in supporting the sector to attract, recruit and retain a diverse workforce while also addressing the skills gap of an aging workforce”.

The project links closely to the Department of Health’s See Potential campaign as they put individuality, diversity and life experience at the heart of adult social care recruitment.

With record low levels of unemployment and increasing competition for staff, employers must challenge themselves to think differently and more creatively about their recruitment practices.

One way of doing this is by recruiting from the huge untapped potential of people who are under-represented in the sector (and sometimes hard to reach), many of whom have the right values and behaviours to work in our sector.

This might include, for example, people who experience mental ill-health, homeless people, ex-offenders, recovering addicts, military veterans and the long-term unemployed.

This can help employers to diversify their workforce, fill vacancies and retain good people.

Skills for Care is proud to be working with four initiatives in England that support people from under-represented groups into education, training and/ or employment in adult social care. 



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