The difference between caring and supporting

  • A
  • A
  • A

The workforce has been undergoing a transformation from a culture of direct care to one of direct SUPPORT.  Direct care implies a caregiving mentality —  an environment in which a staff does for an individual with a disability.  Staff in a support role instead work to empower individuals to exercise their rights, be more independent and learn new skills that will help them discover what matters most to them.  We support people by encouraging them to take risks and try new things, by taking a chance that someone might fail but may succeed in learning something brandnew about themselves and by taking extra time to encourage people to do things on their own even though it would easier, neater, and faster to do it ourselves.

Would I be a better support staff or caregiver?

  • Do I like to make sure things are easy for people? Do I jump in to help when someone is struggling?
  • Do I feel better when I make someone else happy?
  • Do I encourage people to try new things even when it may be hard for them at first?
  • Do I like to take credit for others’ success or do I like to be an invisible support?
  • Do I like to teach people the things they want to learn or do I prefer to teach what I already know?