For many people the care of others comes naturally, and you’ve no doubt found yourself offering to run an errand for a neighbor, volunteering at a local event or organization, or donating to a charity. Simple acts of kindness such as these are what make the world go round, and it’s rewarding to be able to help in whatever way we can. However, if your passion for helping people extends further than what’s expected, and those random, everyday acts of kindness, you might like to think about a career that would allow you to offer assistance in a specific way; a role that will leave you feeling fulfilled, far happier in your working environment, and able to use talents you might have been storing away until now.
I want to help people: what next?
When you think about it most careers involve helping people in one way or another, whether that’s via customer service, providing a skill they’d find useful, or offering direct care. Indeed, there are a variety of job roles you could take that would enable you to help people in a way, and across a variety of sectors.
The healthcare industry, for example, is one of the most obvious when it comes to helping people, but the kinds of careers available are incredibly diverse. From specialized medical care and tailored therapies, to general practitioners, nurses, rehabilitation staff, and those who work in admin and office roles, each person in that industry is there to help people at a particular level. Public sector jobs, including police officer, firefighter, civil servant, politician, or postman/woman will also enable you to help others, and again their job specifications are vastly different. You may decide that you’d like to help people in another way, and join a charitable organization as a fundraiser or coordinator; not all means of helping people will be paid jobs, and it’s up to you to discover how your time and talents are best used.
Think about the kinds of skills you possess, or would like to learn. Is there a particular job you feel you’d be good at, or is your passion for helping people steering you in one direction or another? You see, many of the sectors that fall under the umbrella of ‘caring’ are incredibly competitive to get into; job openings are rare, and when they do become available there are plenty of skilled and experienced workers ready to take their place. It’s always a good idea to think very carefully about what you can offer the caring profession before leaping in. How else can you expect to find your dream role?
The best routes to a fulfilling career helping people
Once you’ve ascertained what you’re good at, how you’d like to help people, and the kinds of position that will allow you to fulfill both of these things, it’s time to get out there and achieve your dream. There are numerous paths that lead towards a fulfilling career helping people, and some of them will offer more benefits and chances of success than others. Whether you’re venturing down the route of education, voluntary work or an entry-level position, it’s important to understand the kinds of things that will be expected of you at every turn, and to think carefully about where you’d like to be within the next few years. Budget, current commitments, and prior knowledge should also be considered, but remember; if helping people is something you’re really passionate about, you will always find a way.
Seeking out a specialist education is the most popular pathway into all kinds of caring professions, including healthcare, technological support, and teaching, as well as many kinds of therapy. If you’re able to, head back to college and choose a course that will support your dream to help people; you’ll often find guidelines for the kinds of education that’s expected on job profiles, so take a look. If you gained more general qualifications, but a degree nonetheless, investigate the kinds of training, top up, or master’s degree you would need to achieve the kind of standard the position is asking for. Public health, for example, requires a background in teaching, research, environment, or medicine, and there are further qualifications like a University of Arizona’s masters in public health that you could complete in addition to prior knowledge and training.
Voluntary work is a popular way to help people, taking up as much time as you have to give. Again, the concept of voluntary work is an assorted one, comprising everything from helping at a local school, library, or care home, to caring for animals, working directly with a charity, or managing a fundraising store. You may even want to make yourself available within your community, and assist neighbors or businesses in any way they need help. As well as being incredibly rewarding, voluntary work is a great way to narrow down potential careers, and to introduce you to the areas where your skills could be put to the best use. Many of those who volunteer will find themselves full or part time positions eventually, so it’s worth seeing how you can help today.
An entry-level position
Finally, consider the benefits of an entry-level position, which is typically taken by recent graduates or those who will do specific training on the job. Entry-level roles are ideal for anyone who has achieved a general education and would now like to specialize, and students who have graduated with little work experience; internships and apprenticeships are sometimes considered entry-level roles, and will provide all kinds of valuable experience and training that you’ll then be able to apply to high-paid, or more particular career pathways. It’s important to remember that entry-level positions won’t stay at that level forever, and they’re a valuable means to work your way to where you’d like to be.
Therefore, making the most of a passion to help people could be far easier than you’d initially thought. There are dozens of ways to make that dream happen, and many of them will complement existing commitments, prior education and the talents you already possess.
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