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As a carer for his son, uncle and foster children, TAFE NSW Wyong student Geoff Warnick is using the skills he has developed in his personal life to kick start a career as a care professional.
With the health, wellbeing and community services sector expected to grow by 4.4% to 2021 and with the help of TAFE NSW, Geoff is on track in his aspiration to turn his role within his family into a career to help other families.
Mr Warnick is participating in the TAFE NSW Carer to Career Program, which is a pathway into qualifications that lead to employment in the care industry and recognises skills and learning gained through students’ experiences.
Geoff graduated from a Certificate III in Individual Support last month and is now undertaking Statement of Attainment in Support Coordination. Geoff began studying with TAFE NSW because caring is something his son, Brendan, had taught him and he knew working in the industry is something he would have been proud of.
“The TAFE NSW Carer to Career Program has recognised the skills, experience and knowledge I learnt and developed as a carer of my son, who is now deceased, and I’m now working towards gaining a formal qualification in a field of study that I feel passionate about.
Having much personal experience caring for a person with a disability, Geoff has a refreshing approach to caring which assisted him in his studies.
TAFE NSW Upskilling Carers Coordinator, Michelle Meachem, said Geoff brings the perfect blend of insight and empowerment to training, both highly sought after assets in a person-centric model of choice and control.
“As more people with lived experience like Geoff enter employment in the disability sector, they raise both the confidence and capacity of NDIS participants, and their families, through a shared identity and connection.”
With an ageing population across the North Coast, health, wellbeing and community services is one of the top three employment areas expected to expand the most over a three year period with 6,231 jobs forecasted to be added.
For more detail about the Carer to Careers program visit visit.tafensw.edu.au/carer-to-career or call 131 601.
Media contact: Sarah Lievore, TAFE NSW Media Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org
 Research conducted by TAFE NSW September 2018