The community sector is a skilled profession.
But many people assume that you need qualifications in fields like social work, community services or counselling to find a job!
However, there are many different skills that are needed in the community sector – and many are easily transferrable from your current industry into a community sector role.
These include skills, qualifications or experience in law, finance, media and communication, management, IT, administration, policy, HR or operations.
“There is space for a really big range of skills. There’s opportunities that you might not think. It’s not all about direct client service, it’s not all about specific social work or psychology or legal skills. There’s places for pretty much every skill to help organisations serve people better and become better organisations.”Penelope, Client and Community Engagement Officer,
Of course, if you want to go into a particular role such as an early childhood educator or drug and alcohol counsellor, you will need to upskill with a vocational or academic qualification.
But transferrable skills allow you to join the community sector using experience developed in a previous industry sector. That means you can immediately make a difference in a community sector job while also starting to explore new opportunities and possible career paths.
And dont forget about transferable soft skills. The personal qualities and traits that help you do your job effectively and efficiently are key to the successful delivery of outcomes for vulnerable clients and communities.
Many of the ACT Community Sector Career Gateway Career Ambassadors joined the sector from government, business or other professions bringing with them their valuable experience and skills to support people facing vulnerability and disadvantage.
Think about how you can apply the ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ skills developed in your current industry to roles that interest you in the community sector.
Alternatively contact the ACT Community Sector Careers Gateway to attend an event or speak to a Careers Ambassador who has also made a career change to see how you can find a role that makes a real difference to Canberra’s individuals, families and communities.
Also take a look at the Australian Community Workers Association for more information and advice.