Karis Garrick is a 26-year-old Senior Care Worker for Crossreach in the Shetland Islands.

Karis is born and raised on Shetland and has known from early in life that she had the key characteristics to become a carer and help look after people. She’s since gone on to forge a career in adult social care and taken advantage of numerous training opportunities to rapidly progress in her role.

“As a young girl, I always had a real interest and passion for looking after other people, particularly the elderly, so I was lucky in that I always had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to do in life.

“I left school at 16 and went straight to Shetland College to start learning more about what the role entails. The course was brilliant as it was full of practical elements and I was able to get out and about and gain first-hand experience at residential care centres.

“Following this, I was fortunate enough to get my role with Crossreach which has been brilliant. Thanks to Crossreach, I gained my SVQ3 in 2019, and then my SVQ4 earlier this year.

“The training and opportunity for progression has always been something that’s really appealed to me. You’re able to progress if you wish to do so and importantly, it’s done at a pace that you’re comfortable with.

“For me, it’s meant I’ve been able to develop my skills and progress quickly from a Relief Care Worker, to Senior Care Worker and most recently to Deputy Manager, which I love.

“Of course, there are challenges, as with any job. You can have days where things don’t go quite as you’d hoped or the person you’re caring for might not be having the best day themselves but the huge difference you make to other people’s lives always makes the job so rewarding.

“It’s a great feeling knowing that some of the simple things many take for granted, like sitting down for a coffee and a chat, can light up someone’s day.”

Karis’ advice to people looking to apply for an adult social care position:

“If you’re someone that’s compassionate and naturally puts others above yourself, then I really feel a role in adult social care could be for you.
“My advice would be to get experience so you can get a feel for what the role is like and just to go for it as you’ll never look back. I know I haven’t.”