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Childcare

Social care is a profession where people work with those who experience marginalisation or disadvantage or who have special needs. Social care practitioners work in a wide variety of settings with a wide variety of people: children and adolescents in residential care, people with learning or physical disabilities, the homeless, people with alcohol/drug dependency, families in the community, older people or recent immigrants to Ireland. Social care practitioners typically work in a direct person-to-person capacity with service users. They will try to provide an environment in which various social, educational and relationship interventions can take place where the service user lives. Work in the sector is usually interdisciplinary. Typically, social care workers, social workers, early childhood care workers and so on work together in teams. This programme is delivered through a blend of lectures, workshops and two full semesters of off-site, supervised practice placement.

In this course, it is essential that students develop practical working skills in a variety of real-world settings and demonstrate their competence in performing social care roles. To make sure that graduates are fully prepared for the diversity that this job offers, field work visits and placements are an integral part of the course.

Due to the broad range of areas covered on the course, there are a wide variety of career opportunities for graduates, in both the public and the voluntary sector. Areas include residential care, outreach, alcohol/drug dependency, family support, community care, older people, juvenile justice and community childcare services. Graduates also work as carers of children with special needs, carers of adults with special needs and/or behavioural difficulties. Community care workers are involved in providing outreach and family support services for children and adults living at home. Career options exist in a variety of settings, including the Health Service Executive (HSE) and the substantial voluntary and community sectors.

 

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