The role of a Caseworker in Community Services

Caseworkers improve the lives of their clients (normally adults, children or families experiencing a crisis) by helping them to access care and support services, find the motivation to make lifestyle changes, and achieve their goals in difficult times.

If you are considering a career as a Caseworker, then read on to find out what a workday is like in this fulfilling and fascinating world.

Caseworker jobs: From Counselling to care homes

“Caseworker” is a broad term covering many pockets within the Community Services industry:

  • Youth Work or Youth Justice
  • Counselling and Mental Health
  • Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) rehabilitation
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander services
  • Family services
  • Aged Care
  • Disability services

Of course, they may not always be called a Caseworker. Similar job titles like Case Manager, Support Worker, Welfare Worker and Social Worker are common in Australia.

A day in the life of a Caseworker

Two days are rarely the same for a Caseworker in Australia, however the day-to-day is often a mix of in-person and administrative support:

  • Meeting with clients to listen and understand their needs
  • Liaising with Community Services providers to coordinate support services
  • Client advocacy to Government and public interest groups
  • Processing paperwork
  • Organising housing, training or employment
  • Responding to client emergencies

Some Caseworkers are quite hands-on with clients, especially in fields like Youth Work and AOD Counselling where the individual has experienced a traumatic event. In other areas (like Disability Support and Aged Care) a Caseworker’s focus may swing towards advocacy, helping clients to navigate the red tape around support services.

Salary and job statistics

  • The average salary for a Caseworker is $65,000-$70,000
  • 60% of Caseworkers in Community Services work part-time
  • 80% are female, with an average age between 35 and 44
  • 11-13% are working in WA, with the most (30%) in NSW
  • Strong job growth is expected for all roles

What type of person excels as a Caseworker?

Striking a balance between compassion and pragmatism will put you in good stead to succeed as a Caseworker. Clients are inspired by the strength and empathy a Caseworker demonstrates, and directly assisted by the work they do to coordinate support services.

Whether innate or developed over time, Caseworkers are also very organised and attentive to clients’ needs. They maintain an admirable dedication in the toughest personal crises, to ensure their clients are given the best opportunities to improve their lives.

How to become a Caseworker in Youth Work, AOD Counselling and more

More than 98% of Caseworkers hold a Certificate III qualification or higher, with around two-thirds opting to study Social Work at the Diploma or Bachelor level.

However, you don’t need a university degree to get started: TrainSmart Australia offers nationally recognised Diploma courses teaching a balance of real-life skills and industry insight:

Get in touch to request course information or apply online to become a qualified Caseworker in 2021.

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