A Student’s Experience of Social Work at BallyCara

November 18, 2020 8:28 am Published by


Erynne Casey (Bachelor of Social Work Student) writes on her placement experience at BallyCara.

Throughout studying at university, the question “What area of social work do you want to go into?” was always being thrown around amongst the students. ‘Child protection’, ‘family violence’, ‘refugees and asylum seekers’, were the dominant replies. Rarely, if ever, did I hear any interest in aged care. It seemed I was the only one within my cohort of social work students interested in the ageing field. The subtle puzzled looks and questions seemed to suggest I was strange to be interested in working with older people, especially as a younger person. For myself, I saw it as an opportunity to learn about lives filled with wisdom and rich stories, while also having a platform to contribute to justice and optimal health in the older population.

My name is Erynne and I am a fourth year Bachelor of Social Work student. I am currently completing my final field placement at BallyCara. My great-grandmother resided in the Village a number of years ago before transitioning to Sunnyside Villa where she was cared for in her final years. I remember as a child, visiting her at BallyCara and thinking what a beautiful atmosphere and friendly people she was surrounded by. I never thought I would have the privilege to undertake my student placement with BallyCara.

As a student, I entered BallyCara with fresh eyes, observing their internal operations and approach to aged care. I have worked closely with BallyCara’s social worker, Linda, who works with the Home Care team and in the Short-Term Restorative Care program. I am in awe of Linda’s passion, skills and dedication to supporting people. I have also understood BallyCara’s organisational culture as nothing short of fantastic. This is evidenced by the strong collaborative nature between the allied health professionals, who aim to best support clients in an individualised and holistic way.

The social work role within aged care is still evolving. My understanding of the role in aged care is one that offers clients a valuable point of contact to the wider web of health professionals. Social workers can support clients in finding their own solutions to issues and ‘think outside the square’ when it comes to meeting needs such as health, housing, finance, leisure activities and family issues. It is no secret that society can hold a rather negative halo above the aged care industry. I am eager to learn more from BallyCara as I feel they successfully evade this tainted halo. As a social worker, I hope to be a part of inspiring positivity and creativity among people who are in their golden years of adulthood.


Are you looking for support or services in your home? Read more about BallyCara’s Home Care here or Short Term Restorative Care here.



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This post was written by Lachlan Green

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