What does a human service worker do?
Human service workers provide support and valuable information to people that require assistance. They work with a variety of people such as those with mental health, social, and psychological issues that hinder them from normal everyday functioning. They provide emotional support to people suffering from abuse, violence, and other issues.
Human service workers often work in clinics, group homes, physical therapy settings, correctional facilities, and community health centers. Many also work in settings to help treat people suffering from addictions.
What kind of training does a human service worker need?
Human services workers typically need at least a bachelor degree in human services, social work, or other related field. Human services programs usually provide instruction on how to observe patients, record information, conduct interviews, handle crisis intervention cases, implement plans of treatment, and use a variety of problem solving methods. Many aspiring human services workers complete internships or volunteer experiences or work as helpers in human services facilities to gain practical experience. Most employers provide some on the job training to enable new human services workers to learn the necessary policies and procedures. Human service workers complete continuing education and additional training throughout their careers to keep their skills current and stay up to date on developments in the field.
What are the prospects for a career as a human service worker?
Employment of human services workers is expected to grow much faster than average for all professions, increasing 23% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The growing and aging population and increased need for a variety of human services will drive job growth.
Job prospects are expected to be excellent, especially for human services workers with postsecondary education and sufficient experience. Some job openings will stem from the need to replace human services workers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.
How much do human service workers make?
As of March 2010, the middle 50% of human service workers earn annual salaries between $20,523 and $25,730. The top 10% earn annual salaries of more than $28,478 (2).
A career as a human service worker is a great choice for people with a strong interest in helping a variety of people access many different services and programs. Human service workers must have a solid understanding of the necessary policies and procedures related to human service programs. Patience, understanding, critical thinking, and good problem solving skills are essential traits. Human service workers must have good communication and interpersonal skills and ability to relate to many different people. They must also have good time management skills and be able to abide by specific deadlines.