School holidays always seem to come around a little bit quicker each time. While it can be exciting for the kids to have some time off around this period, it can also be stressful working out how to fill up their break with things to do, organising extra respite care, or negotiating what days care workers might have off. Preparing these things well in advance can help ease that stress and allow you to enjoy the break the way you want to.
It may be a good idea to start getting a plan together for the break. We’ve included a few tips below on how to best prepare for any extra support you may need.
Check in with your current support workers
With school and public holidays coming up (Labour weekend and Christmas/New Years), many people are looking at taking some time off to go on holiday or just relax at home. Check in early with your worker and ask about their holiday plans. It is important to know early on if you need to prepare any extra support so you aren’t left scrambling if your worker goes on leave.
List jobs for extra support early
If your usual worker is taking time off or you want some extra respite support you may want to look for another short-term worker to fill in those days. By listing a job on Mycare now, you’ll have plenty of time to find the right person to provide the extra support you need.
Establishing a team long-term
The best way to ensure consistent cover year round is to establish a team of workers that become familiar with you or your loved one's routine. Having a team of workers means that more likely than not someone will be available if there is a gap in your cover.
Having a few casual workers who are available to fill support gaps when your regular carer is unavailable is a good idea too! This type of work could suit students and those seeking more casual jobs. You can use Mycare’s Support Circle function to keep workers connected and up-to-date even if they don’t work for you on a regular basis.
Many Mycare users who are looking for support in the same area are banding together to share workers and costs. This can work well for everyone – more fun and lower costs for people needing support, and additional hours for people seeking more work. In order to make this work well, people have found that regular meetings are the best way to plan for the month ahead.
It may be that finding support for a particular shift is difficult (if, for example, you need support over the weekend). Some of our users have started using a rotational system where they hire three support workers for say the Saturday night shift and then rotate them so each worker has two Saturdays off and one on. If you are running into this types of situation this may work for you.
Urgent support needed? Mycare can help
Sometimes events occur that throw our regular routines out and people can find themselves in need of urgent support. Mycare is always able to step in and provide extra guidance and support to help you find workers right away.
We recently had a call from a Mycare user to say that his adult daughter was unexpectedly coming to stay on short notice, as her primary caregiver had been injured.
Living in another town to her father, Arthur*, meant that her usual support network wasn't available to her. The pressure was on as he only had a few hours to find the necessary support. Arthur explains: “She is an adult now and I was advised it was no longer appropriate for me to undertake her personal care.”
Although he felt that this was an impossible ask, he rang Mycare who helped him create a job listing, requesting someone three times a day to provide personal care for his daughter. He was astounded to find his ideal worker lived a minute away and was able to start work immediately, despite it being a public holiday. “She was amazing and I will definitely call on her again to support my daughter when she comes to stay in the future,” says Arthur.
We always recommend that you give yourself time to find the right person. However, we also understand that life doesn’t always follow a script and there are a number of reasons why you may require support urgently. If this is the case then give us a call so that we can help you find the help you need.
If you have questions about our services or need help to find the support you need, contact the Customer Engagement Team on 0800 677 700, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Name has been changed