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Houseparents and residential wardens


Houseparents and residential wardens are responsible for the care and supervision of children, young offenders and the elderly within residential homes and nurseries, schools or institutions for young offenders.

Main Tasks

  • Creates friendly, secure atmosphere and tries to gain the trust and confidence of those in the home or under supervision;
  • Plans and participates in games and leisure activities to encourage emotional, social, physical and intellectual development;
  • Ensures that all material needs of residents are provided and endeavours to resolve any problems that they may have;
  • Provides one-to-one counselling or group therapy;
  • Establishes and maintains contact with members of the neighbouring community and/or the residents’ family and friends;
  • Maintains contact and discusses problems/progress with other staff and social workers;
  • Keeps records and writes reports.


There are no formal academic entry requirements. In most cases workers will be required to register with the appropriate statutory body which involves satisfying the registration criteria. This would normally include holding or working towards the appropriate qualification for the job. Entrants must typically be 18 years old and have experience of working in a care environment. Both off- and on-the-job training is available. A wide range of qualifications including NVQs/SVQs covering various aspects of care are available. Background checks including a CRB check are likely to be required.

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