Making a difference: from civil servant to support worker

Barbara's story begins in Ghana where she served as a civil servant in one of the government's agencies. Read about her journey to a Support Worker in Australia
Marie Page
30th July 2023

In life, unexpected twists and turns often lead us down paths we never imagined. Such is the story of Barbara, a compassionate woman from Ghana, who found herself transitioning from a civil servant to a support worker in Australia. Barbara works for Home Care Nurses Australia, which provides personal care and support required to enhance the life of seniors, persons with disabilities, and individuals suffering from ill health.

A journey of compassion

Barbara’s story begins in Ghana, where she served as a civil servant in one of the government’s agencies. With a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from one of the country’s pioneering private universities, Barbara had a promising career ahead. However, life had a different plan when her husband was accepted to pursue a PhD in Australia.

Upon arriving in Australia, Barbara was faced with the task of finding work to support her family. Presented with various options, she made an intriguing choice: to become a support worker. Her decision was driven by the heartfelt desire to make a positive impact on the lives of others, allowing them to experience the joys of living a normal life.

A source of inspiration

Barbara’s passion for helping others was born out of personal experience. When her late mother fell ill and became unable to care for herself, Barbara took it upon herself to provide the love, care, and support her mother needed.

“I developed this passion to help others when I had to care for my late mother when she was diagnosed with a sickness that made her unable to do anything for herself.”

Bathing, feeding and tending to her mother’s needs brought Barbara an indescribable sense of fulfilment, knowing that she was alleviating her mother’s pain.

The transition

Transitioning to a career as a support worker was not without its challenges. Navigating the intricate processes of acquiring the necessary qualifications and documentation demanded dedication and perseverance. However, Barbara’s unwavering determination to care for her clients, as she had cared for her own mother, fuelled her resolve and made the challenges seem insignificant.

The joy of making a difference

One of the most rewarding aspects of Barbara’s work as a support worker is the gratitude expressed by her clients.

“What gives me more joy is when my clients say ‘Thank you’ to me after my shifts. It means a lot to me and it tells me I am doing something good for them and humanity in general.”

These words of appreciation reaffirm Barbara’s belief in the importance of her work, inspiring her to continue her mission.

This mission is supported by technology, which is playing an increasingly crucial role in healthcare. Home Care Nurses Australia has embraced the use of innovative solutions to enhance its caregiving efforts. One such tool is CareLineLive’s home care software. By leveraging this technology, Barbara can efficiently manage schedules, track client progress, and maintain vital communication channels with her clients and their families.

Challenges as opportunities

Like any profession, support work presents its fair share of challenges. Working with a client for the first time can be particularly daunting, as they may be reserved and reluctant to express their needs beyond the assigned duties. Establishing meaningful connections becomes a formidable task when regular visits are not possible. However, Barbara embraces the positive side of every challenge, reminding herself of the underlying purpose of her work.

A renewed spirit

Acknowledging the toll that challenges can take, Barbara understands the importance of self-care. When faced with fatigue or feeling overwhelmed, she takes a step back, refreshes herself, and returns with renewed vigour. It is this resilience and dedication to her clients’ well-being that make Barbara an exceptional support worker.

Barbara’s journey from a civil servant in Ghana to a compassionate support worker in Australia is a testament to the transformative power of compassion and empathy. Through her personal experiences and unwavering determination, she has not only positively impacted the lives of her clients but has also become an inspiration for others embarking on similar paths.

Barbara’s story reminds us that sometimes the most rewarding career choices are the ones rooted in our innate desire to make a difference in the lives of others.

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